Fans of Apple with iPhones have a complicated relationship with Siri. Most of the iPhone users I know tend to ignore Siri in general, or become frustrated with its less-than-perfect performance. Still, Siri is a major part of Apple’s mobile identity, which is why it’s odd that the digital assistant hasn’t yet made the jump from mobile to desktop. However, a new patent published by the USTPO yesterday may signal that Siri will head to Macs in the near future.

Spotted by Apple Insider, the patent for “intelligent digital assistant in a desktop environment” was filed only a few months ago, in February. The patent describes functions that are very similar to its mobile counterpart: taking dictation or voice commands, completing tasks based on commands or click-and-drag, and overall bringing very Siri-like capabilities to a desktop environment.

One of the reasons that this new “Siri for Mac” was probably delayed for so long might have to do with a forthcoming feature for iOS 8, which was demoed at Apple’s WWDC event earlier this summer. Called “Handoff,” the feature allows users to pick up where they left off on different tasks between OS X and iOS, and vice versa. While a Mac-based version of Siri could certainly have been useful without the ability to sync tasks, it seems likely that Handoff would go a long way toward making the digital assistant work even better. If Siri has access to what you’re doing on your mobile device as well as what you’re doing on your desktop, along with all pertinent and relevant data and documents on both platforms, suddenly it’s a lot more useful than it might’ve been before.

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That said, who knows when or if this will ever make its way to your Mac? OS X Yosemite is coming out later this year, but Siri wasn’t one of the demonstrated features. It seems more plausible, then, that Siri on desktop might not show up until at least next year’s WWDC event. Keep your eyes out.

[Source: USTPO via AppleInsider]


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