We now know Siri as a voice-guided assistant for making appointments, sending messages, retrieving information, or having a conversation. But you're not always in a position to talk to your iPhone, making a smart text messaging assistant a lot more practical. Apple also seems to see it and investigates the possibilities of using Siri in iMessage. This way, you can easily ask Siri a question by simply typing the message.
In a new patent, Apple describes the use of Siri as a kind of chatbot. This way you can use the same Siri features as now, but in text form. But, according to the patent, Siri also receives new features because this assistant can respond to photos and videos. Apple's patent shows several examples of usage.
In the image above, you can see how the user puts all sorts of standard questions to Siri. For example, you can ask how many calories are in a chocolate bar, but you can also ask the text-based Siri to send a friend a message that's later. Although in this case you can even send a message to that friend yourself, in many cases it is a lot more practical that you are not obliged to ask Siri by voice to ask for assignments. Especially in public places often taboo is the use of voice-assisted assistants.
However, Siri can also recognize objects on images in the patent. Imagine seeing a car parked and you're wondering how much it costs. Make a picture, send it to Siri and the assistant immediately recognizes what model is going and tells you what the starting price is. As a result, Siri should be able to recognize objects in pictures, a feature that is not yet possible in the current Siri. In a similar way, Siri can also recognize video and audio in the patent.
Another advantage of Siri as a chat partner is that past questions are not lost. If you ask Siri now, it will not remember for a moment later. Because you can always browse back in a chat, you can also look back at previously asked questions. The assistant himself can also look back at previous questions, so the patent describes.
Finally, the patent deals with group discussions. Siri can participate in a group discussion so that all participants can ask Siri directly. The answers given by Siri are therefore immediately visible to all participants. That is a big advantage over the current Siri, because this is now only visible to you. The patent describes the example for making a restaurant appointment. One person can ask Siri to look for Chinese restaurants nearby, while the other would rather see only the cheaper will.
It's not the first time Apple decides in a patent how Siri can be used within iMessage. A previous patent of November 2016 already saw how Siri works in a group discussion. However, today's new patent describes more about a text version of the current Siri, including new photo and video recognition. Apple would like to make Siri in iOS 11 smarter, but it's only the question of whether the operation described in this patent is already in iOS 11.