During the past years, we saw a rise of smart assistants from various companies including Google and Amazon. This trend still has a lot to show since every year new companies join with their own voice assistants. Apple was one of the pioneers in this segment with Siri, however, the iPhone voice assistant didn’t age too well. In comparison with competitors, we can say that Apple’s Siri is one of the less appealing and sometimes less useful. The Cupertino-based firm is aware of this fact and acquired Voysis. It’s an AI-oriented company behind the development of a platform for digital voice assistants to understand natural language.
Voysis is a company from Ireland and has been known for developing voice assistants for online shopping apps. The company also developed its platform an on AI-based method called Wavenets. This method allows the voice assistant program to work on a really small portion of memory once it was trained. According to the company’s co-founder Peter Cahill, his company managed to shrink its system to the point where the software uses as little as 25MB. This way, it’s easy to run on a smartphone that doesn’t have a proper internet connection.
While Apple didn’t disclose the reasons behind the new purchase, it’s easy to assume that the company will use Voysis to improve Siri’s natural language processing capabilities.
This isn’t the first time that Apple acquires small startups to improve its services. A few days ago, the company bought Dark Sky, a hyper-local weather app. The company will use all the work developed for Dark Sky to improve its own Weather app in iOS. The latest acquisition is good proof that even if Apple doesn’t find the necessary expertise for improving its ecosystem it has enough money to buy companies that are succesful.