— Photograph by Raymond Wong

Apple has been slow to get into the generative AI game, but that may not last for long. Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported in his latest newsletter that iOS 18 could be one of the biggest software updates in the company’s history thanks to the introduction of generative AI-powered features in Siri, iMessage, and more.

While Apple hasn’t confirmed anything, Apple is reportedly looking to upgrade Siri with generative AI and large language models, or LLMs. This could be a huge upgrade for Siri since it’s largely been stagnant — I mean, when’s the last time you used Siri for something beyond a basic task like setting a timer or calling someone hands-free?

A More Sophisticated Siri

If you’re wondering what a modern AI infusion looks like for Apple, Gurman previously said that it would “improve how both Siri and the Messages app can field questions and auto-complete sentences.” That’s not super descriptive, but we’ve seen how capable ChatGPT can be.

Upgraded with LLM, it’s possible for Siri to feel more human, but also be able to handle more complex requests or questions. Gurman previously detailed how Apple was working on its own LLM, codenamed “Ajax,” along with an internal chatbot called Apple GPT. Pairing Siri with LLMs makes a lot of sense, but Gurman reported that Apple is even looking to eventually incorporate its generative AI into Apple Music, Pages, Keynote, and Xcode.

The Mounting Competiton of AI Assistants

We’ll have to wait until iOS 18’s release to confirm that Siri is getting this major upgrade, which is expected to be released around September. No doubt Apple is feeling the heat from other AI assistants, like Amazon’s Alexa and Microsoft’s Copilot. Even Samsung is heavily investing in AI with its upcoming smartphones.

It may feel like Apple is way behind on the AI craze that ChatGPT spawned, but it still has an opportunity to set the bar for all other smartphones and their built-in assistants. It is Apple, after all, so we could soon be hearing “Hey Siri” a lot more.

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