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Siri gets smarter with baseball-related questions

The move comes ahead of the beginning of MLB's forthcoming new season, and allows iPhone and iPad users to gain more statistical insights from the on-board virtual assistant
Sports Center
April 4, 2016

Apple has given Siri a boost of baseball IQ, allowing the on-board virtual assistant to better answer baseball-related questions ahead of Major League Baseball's forthcoming new season. This is great news for iOS users with a liking for the sport, yet Siri itself nevertheless still has a long way to go.

Home run for Siri

Home run for Siri

Home run for Siri

Indeed, as The Verge reports, Siri now seems able to access new data and resources when responding to questions about baseball. “It can answer questions about more detailed statistics, according to Apple, including historical stats going back to the beginnnig of baseball records,” the publication explains. It’s also possible to get career stats, and information on other leagues. As before, in order to gain these insights from Siri, it’s as simple as holding the Home button and asking a question. Those of you with Apple’s latest iPhones will even be able to use the hands-free “Hey Siri” command.

This makes for a much better experience for baseball fans, yet as The Verge adds, the voice assistant is nevertheless still fairly limited:

More peculiar, specific questions, like “When was the last time the Yankees had a perfect game?” yielded a generic search for the Yankees. Other searches just yielded a Google query. And results that did work had inconsistent presentation — some similar searches had were displayed in an Apple-designed frame, whereas others were a simple copy of a Wolfram Alpha result.

Indeed, Siri still has a long way to go before it becomes a true AI companion for iOS users.

Recently, we explained that enhancements to Google Now have made the search engine giant’s virtual assistant sound more like a real life person, and less like a machine. At the minute, Apple and Google face stiff competition in this arena from Amazon, whose own Echo has proven popular among critics and users. It’s great to see Apple continue to improve Siri’s capabilities, but it’s nevertheless apparent that, in its current form, Siri certainly isn’t the finished product. Here’s holding we see further enhancements with the next major release of iOS, which Apple is expected to preview in June.