When announced at WWDC, many argued that it wouldn’t change or fix Siri at all, because it doesn’t at all improve the way that Siri is able to interpret our commands naturally. And this is in part true, Siri is definitely still falling behind when compared to Google Assistant or even Amazon Echo.
Nevertheless, Shortcuts don’t put Siri ahead of the game, but certainly do nudge it forward slightly.
To this day digital-voice assistants such as Siri and the Google Assistant have not yet become a necessity, though with the roadmap of Google Assistant with Google Duplex this might just be the case. It’s still difficult to deny, however, how convenient it is to get facts, turn on the lights, set a timer, or send a text message all without lifting a finger. We can’t do much more than that, because assistants are frankly not quite ready for complex tasks yet, and personally I find it easier to just skip the assistant and do stuff manually. It often takes longer to complete a task by the time you actually get your assitant to do what you want it to, so it’s just not worth the hassle.
In Apple’s ecosystem, we have Siri on iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, HomePod, CarPlay, and any Mac. With the addition of Shortcuts on each of those devices, you might just be able to unlock the true potential of Siri.
Our Apple devices just got better.
With Shortcuts, Siri’s capabilities grow every time you download an additional app, which is why this could be the change we were looking for.
Every action that can be taken within an application manually can be shared out with Siri, letting people interact with their device only using their voice. Apple plans to reward developers that employ this approach in apps to save our time, rather than fighting for attention, by featuring applications that provide the most time savings and utility for the user. Hopefully, this will encourage developers to make a great experience for when people visit their app, but also focus on making it do something useful too.
This isn’t a virtual assistant that lives in the cloud, but a digital helper that can pair up with the apps uniquely taking advantage of Apple’s hardware and software capabilities to truly improve your use of the device.
Matthew Cassinelli (TechCrunch)
Now more than ever apps are the centerpiece of the Siri experience, so the better the apps you have, the better Siri can be.
Siri still isn’t perfect, can’t perform any task you throw at it and doesn’t have Google Duplex’s ability to make phone calls on your behalf (yet). But Shortcuts will help people use Siri to actually make their lives easier.