Catching up on news out of WWDC was fairly quick — there wasn’t much when it came to voice interaction. The biggest news was Siri shortcuts, which are also available on the HomePod. However, this application requires user involvement and developers to add to their apps. It still places Siri far behind other AI assistants.
Perhaps Apple’s strategy now with voice is maintenance of Siri. This entails adding features like shortcuts, integration and upkeep of APIs and IoT devices, and improvement in speech recognition and NLU. However, since the 2011 debut of Siri, we haven’t seen innovation from Apple in terms of voice.
The opportunity for Apple to move ahead again will come from enabling features that the other voice assistant players might resist — biometrics, emotion detection, cocktail party solution for HomePod. These could help Apple leapfrog the market.