Apple wasn’t the first phone company to launch a touchscreen phone, but the magical way the first iPhone worked made every touch phone before it look like a piece of junk.
Can Apple do the same thing with voice recognition? (A feature that has been included on phones for years — including the iPhone — but is still rarely useful.)
That’s reportedly the plan for the next big version of Apple’s iOS, which the company is supposed to showcase at next month’s WWDC conference in San Francisco.
And a big partnership with Nuance, a voice recognition software company, is on track to be announced at the show, TechCrunch’s MG Siegler reports. (There were previous rumours that Apple was going to buy Nuance, but it would be very expensive. A partnership seems more likely.)
We don’t know the secret tricks Apple could reveal that would make controlling your phone or iPad with your voice actually useful. And who knows if they’ll even work.
But it’s possible they will be as magical as the first time we saw the iPhone’s multi-touch screen controls. And if that happens, expect everyone else in the industry to trot out their copycats, one by one, just as they have with the rest of the iPhone.
(And while we’re at it, a conspiracy theory: Are these leaks about Apple’s partnership a spoiler for a competing Google Android voice-recognition service, perhaps to be announced this week at Google’s I/O conference? We’ll be watching…)