Apple

Apple Adds Delivery, Flight Siri Shortcuts

Apple has launched five new Siri Shortcuts that are now available. The Siri Shortcuts feature was introduced last fall as part of iOS 12.

According to USA Today, the tech giant revealed that it has added shortcuts from American Airlines, Dexcom, Caviar, Merriam-Webster and Spectre. Shortcuts from Airbnb, Drop, ReSound and Smarter will launch within the next few months.

Airbnb's offering will allow users to obtain details on their stays, including check-in time, a map to the place and the Wi-Fi password. The American Airlines shortcut offers information on upcoming travel plans, including flight status, travel time and the gate from which it will depart. In addition, Caviar lets users check on food status or reorder frequent items, while Merriam-Webster adds a “word of the day” and Dexcom enables glucose monitoring. The shortcuts for the Drop and Smarter apps will let users control their coffee makers by voice.

These new offerings join existing shortcuts from Waze and Nike Run Club.

In November, Google Assistant launched support for Siri Shortcuts with the release of its latest update. Users can record a phrase like “OK, Google” or “Hey, Google,” then the Assistant app will open and listen for a question or command whenever that phrase is said to Siri. For example, if the iPhone is unlocked, it can be opened hands-free by saying “Hey, Siri,” then “OK, Google.” In addition, Siri Shortcuts can be set up with frequently used phrases to create a custom voice command for a smart home action.

Shortcuts is just one way Apple has worked to make Siri more useful for its customers. Last month, the company acquired PullString, a San Francisco maker of technology that enables people to design and publish voice-activated apps, to help Siri perform better.

Amazon is currently leading the voice-activated speaker market, while Google is in second place, leaving Apple in third.

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