Apple's Siri might be able to control applications in iOS 18

An iPhone on a blue background showing the Siri logo
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple’s already been teeing up that artificial intelligence will be a big focus at WWDC 2024, and just a few days after confirming the timing of its special event for June 10, 2024, we’re getting another report on what some of those announcements might be.

Siri, which has been built into every iPhone since the iPhone 4s and found on countless other Apple-made devices, will likely be getting a major upgrade. Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman is now reporting that Siri will be able to control various elements of an application on an iPhone, likely rolling out with iOS 18.

Instead of triggering a command on-screen with your finger, you could ask Siri to open a specific file, send an email, or do any myriad specific tasks within an application. It will be limited to Apple-made applications at first, according to the report, and further, it will just be one command at a time at launch. It’s noted that the functionality will launch with iOS 18, but a later update will let it run through several tasks at once – think along the lines of moving a file from one spot to another or cropping a photo and then emailing it to someone. 

Two iPhones on a blue background showing Siri and Shortcuts

(Image credit: Apple)

To bring this to life, Gurman notes that Apple had to revamp “Siri’s underlying software using large language models.” Beyond just application-based functions, Siri will potentially tackle other generative AI requests like summarizing an article or even a series of notes. This would be a big boost to Siri, along with the more advanced functionality of Siri Shortcuts. Additionally, AI will be used on the device to analyze what is going on and have Siri do some of the legwork for predicted requests automatically. It should also make Siri more usable and level the playing field with the likes of Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant. 

Gurman’s latest report comes shortly after The Information reported that Apple has agreed with OpenAI to bring AI features to its platforms. It remains to be seen if that comes to fruition and exactly what it means, but we think it’s more likely that the tech behind ChatGPT might be infused rather than Siri being powered by that LLM directly. It seems that Siri's understanding of apps and ability to control individual parts has been worked on in-house at Apple, though.

Either way, with all the reporting and rumors, it’s clear that WWDC24 will focus on AI and all of Apple’s ecosystems. TechRadar will be on the ground for the special event, and you can read more about what to expect from it here.

You Might Also Like

Jacob Krol
US Managing Editor News

Jacob Krol is the US Managing Editor, News for TechRadar. He’s been writing about technology since he was 14 when he started his own tech blog. Since then Jacob has worked for a plethora of publications including CNN Underscored, TheStreet, Parade, Men’s Journal, Mashable, CNET, and CNBC among others. 

He specializes in covering companies like Apple, Samsung, and Google and going hands-on with mobile devices, smart home gadgets, TVs, and wearables. In his spare time, you can find Jacob listening to Bruce Springsteen, building a Lego set, or binge-watching the latest from Disney, Marvel, or Star Wars.