Apple is looking into integrating its Siri virtual assistant into the company's Messages platform, according to a patent published today, enabling the AI to provide directions, retrieve movie times, and assist with peer-to-peer payments, among other potential uses.

Picked up by AppleInsider, Apple's application for a "Virtual assistant in a communication session" appeared on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's website on Thursday, and details a system in which iMessage users can invoke Siri from within chat threads to get answers to relevant queries, complete scheduling tasks, and more.

siri-messages
One scenario describes an instance in which users chatting amongst themselves bring Siri into the conversation simply by including it in the group thread. Using semantic analysis, the AI detects when it may be of help to complete a task and pitches in accordingly - such as finding a place to eat nearby, and telling the user how long it will take for their friends to arrive.

Although Siri's responses don't appear to other users, the assistant is able to parse their messages in order to work out whether it can help with a task. For instance, in another example, the user asks "Siri, help us schedule a meeting," in a group chat thread and the AI cross-checks open calendar dates for the present users to suggest a potential meeting date and time. Participants can then vote for a preferred time and place, after which Siri schedules the meeting in everyone's calendar.

In another example, chat members are notified that a user is utilizing Siri and are asked if they would like to do the same, and participants can approve or deny AI access to personal data about them during the chat session. Meanwhile other scenarios depict AI interactions during peer-to-peer payments, for example by determining which financial apps are being used by each chat member.

Some of the implementations in the patent bear similarities to actions already offered by Google Assistant in Google's Allo app, and by chat bots in Facebook Messenger, while third-party apps like PayPal and Uber currently offer Siri functionality following Apple's release of the Siri SDK to developers. Whether or not Apple decides to integrate Siri in Messages in a future update, the AI is likely to require extensive development before users consider inviting Siri to conversations and extending access to their data.

Top Rated Comments

NexusUser Avatar
77 months ago
First Google glass, now Allo, I can only hope the next idea Apple rips off of Google involves free unlimited cloud photo back-ups.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
CarpalMac Avatar
77 months ago
Come on MR members, don't think, don't discuss, ignore all nuance, just react!! Public hanging of Cook is the only thing that'd shut this knee-jerk crap up for a while. Until his replacement does a far worse job, that is.
You do realise that your posts are as cliché as the ones you seem dedicated to mocking?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Abazigal Avatar
77 months ago
Agree. Apple's attempts to charge, for what I receive for free from Amazon and Google, keep me entirely in their ecosystems, and entirely out of Apple's.

All I use Apple for is their hardware, for gateways into Google and Amazon.

And Apple hardware is starting to fall behind.

I wouldn't have believed it two years ago, but I'm starting to see a slight possibility of having a completely Apple free life in a few years.

Apple, as I've pointed out in the past, jumped the shark with Beats.

They need to go back to making the best hardware there is, charge a lot for it, then have unlimited free services (music, backup) as a side benefit. Otherwise I'll probably eventually be out of here.

I've already started buying non-Apple gateways: Echo.
Go ahead and leave the Apple ecosystem if you feel it no longer meets your needs, by all means. No need to sound like you have just woken up from the Matrix.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Bryan Bowler Avatar
77 months ago
No thank you Apple! How about working on a new Mac Pro for a change?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Starfyre Avatar
77 months ago
Can someone tell me how Apple can get a patent for this when Google already has this concept in Google Allo? Did Google not file a patent for this already?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
M2M Avatar
77 months ago
Good news: it's not emoji related.

Bad news: who cares this 'machine learning smart chats' ?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

apple watch ultra hammer test

YouTuber Tests Apple Watch Ultra Durability With a Hammer: Table Breaks Before the Watch

Sunday September 25, 2022 2:27 pm PDT by
A YouTuber has put Apple's claims for the durability of the Apple Watch Ultra to the test by putting it up against a drop test, a jar of nails, and repeated hits with a hammer to test the sapphire crystal protecting the display. TechRax, a channel popular for testing the durability of products, first tested the Apple Watch Ultra by dropping it from around four feet high. The Apple Watch...
tim cook spring loaded event

Six Major Products to Expect From Apple in 2023

Sunday September 25, 2022 10:57 am PDT by
As we approach the end of a busy product release season for Apple with only new iPads and Macs left to be announced over the next month or so, we're also setting our sights on 2023. Apple is rumored to have several major products in the pipeline for next year, including new Macs, a new HomePod, a VR/AR headset, and so much more. Other than new iPhones and Apple Watches, which are expected...
apple watch ultra deuglify 1

Apple Watch Ultra User Mods Titanium Casing to 'Deuglify' Design

Tuesday September 27, 2022 8:05 am PDT by
An Apple Watch Ultra user has modified their new device's casing to add a brushed finish and remove the orange color of the Action Button in an effort to make it more visually appealing. The Apple Watch Ultra offers the first complete redesign of the Apple Watch since the product line's announcement in 2014, and while the design has been met with praise from many users, some have criticized...
General iOS 16 Feature Yellow

Some iOS 16 Users Continue to Face Unaddressed Bugs and Battery Drain Two Weeks After Launch

Monday September 26, 2022 7:34 am PDT by
Today marks exactly two weeks since Apple released iOS 16 to the public. Besides the personalized Lock Screen, major changes in Messages, and new features in Maps, the update has also seen its fair share of bugs, performance problems, battery drain, and more. After major iOS updates, it's normal for some users to report having issues with the new update, but such reports usually subside in...
iPhone 14 Pro Sports Scores Dynamic Island

iPhone 14 Pro Features Live Sports Scores in Dynamic Island on iOS 16.1

Monday September 26, 2022 7:52 am PDT by
Earlier this month, Apple announced that iOS 16.1 will enable a new Live Activities feature that allows iPhone users to stay on top of things that are happening in real time, such as a sports game or a food delivery order, right from the Lock Screen. On the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, Live Activities also integrate with the Dynamic Island. Premier League match in Dynamic Island via Paul Bradford ...
iPhone 14 Pros in Hand Black Background Feature

Verizon iPhone 14 Pro Customers Reporting Cellular Connection Issues

Monday September 26, 2022 6:23 am PDT by
iPhone 14 Pro customers on the Verizon network in the U.S. are reporting issues with slow and unreliable 5G cellular connections and calls randomly dropping. Several threads on Reddit (1,2,3) and the MacRumors forums chronicle issues faced by Verizon customers and Apple's latest iPhone. According to user reports, signal strength on the iPhone 14 Pro is unreliable and weak, while other...
Tim Cook Apple Event

Gurman: New iPads and Macs May Be Announced Through Press Releases, No October Event

Sunday September 25, 2022 6:50 am PDT by
Apple may decide to release its remaining products for 2022, which include updated iPad Pro, Mac mini, and 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, through press releases on its website rather than a digital event, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman said that Apple is currently "likely to release its remaining 2022 products via press releases,...
Stage Manager Extension Thumb 1

New iPadOS 16.1 Beta Expands Stage Manager to Older iPad Pro Models, Delays External Display Support

Tuesday September 27, 2022 10:24 am PDT by
The most recent beta of iPadOS 16.1 expands the controversial Stage Manager feature to older iPads, allowing it to work with iPad Pro models that have an A12X or A12Z chip, according to information Apple provided to Engadget. The beta also removes the external display support from Stage Manager for the current time, with the feature set to return in a later iPadOS 16 update. Apple's...
iOS 16

Everything New in the Latest iOS 16.1 and iPadOS 16.1 Betas: Stage Manager Expansion, Wallpaper Tweaks and More

Tuesday September 27, 2022 11:36 am PDT by
Apple today released new betas of iOS 16.1 and iPadOS 16.1 to developers, tweaking some of the functionality that's been introduced in prior betas and in the case of iPadOS 16.1, adding a major new feature to Stage Manager. We've rounded up everything new in both betas below. Wallpaper Updates Apple has updated the Wallpaper section of the Settings app to allow users to swap between...
john meyer ultra

Apple Watch Ultra Praised by Watch World Tastemaker John Mayer

Monday September 26, 2022 4:42 am PDT by
Apple Watch Ultra has been endorsed by American musician and famous watch collector John Mayer, who has been showing off the new device on his Instagram account. "Been wearing the Apple Watch Ultra for a week... and it's great," writes Mayer over a photo of the watch. "The first Apple Watch that excited me as a mechanical watch collector." "It's loaded with capability and what I call...