Apple Preparing Siri SDK, Working on Amazon Echo Rival: Report

According to a report by The Information, a source tells the publication Apple is set to open up Siri and release an SDK for developers “after years of internal debate”, to implement the virtual assistant into apps:

Opening up its Siri voice assistant to outside app developers is the more immediate step. Apple is preparing to release a software developer kit, or SDK, for app developers who want their apps to be accessible through Siri, according to a person with direct knowledge of the effort.

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Apple also reportedly has plans to release a hardware device to rival Amazon’s Echo speaker, which listens to customer input to control music, get news and more.

And it is working on an Amazon Echo-like device with a speaker and microphone that people can use to turn on music, get news headlines or set a timer.

Dedicated virtual assistant hardware appears to be the trend, as just last week at their developer conference, Google released Home, their Echo competitor. Both devices are only available in the U.S. right now, with no support for Canada (yet).

The iPhone 6s already supports “always on Siri”, allowing users to say “Hey Siri” to activate the virtual assistant (while other devices, when plugged in, support it too).

Would you want to buy separate hardware to have Siri listening all the time? Or would that be redundant since your iPhone or Apple Watch is always on you?