Voice command and speech recognition features, such as Apple Inc.’s Siri, are convenient and sometimes hilarious. But now Siri may now be downright creepy.
The tech giant Sept. 9 unveiled its latest line of products and features, including an updated “Hey, Siri” feature that allows users to leave Siri on all the time in case they want quick help with something.
When this option is activated, Siri is listening to everything and comparing what it hears to the trigger phrase, “Hey, Siri.” Once it hears the phrase, an encrypted clip of the audio is sent to Apple. According to TechCrunch, Apple said that Siri will never record what the user says or send the audio clip to Apple until the feature is triggered. Until Siri recognizes the trigger phrase, all voice patterns are matched “locally,” Apple said, according to TechCrunch.
Before the update, users had to turn Siri on by manually pushing the home button or by activating the “always listening” function while their device was charging. It’s too early to tell whether most iPhone users will find the new feature convenient, or just Orwellian.
And if there’s anyone out there actually named Siri who uses an iPhone, this feature may become a nuisance every time somebody tries to get their attention. “Hey, Siri, go clean your room!” “I’m sorry, I can’t.”
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