Ahead of the upcoming Sept. 9 Hey Siri media event of Apple, Apple news website Apple Insider has found out that the highly-anticipated iPhone 6S will have an always-on Hey Siri feature.
The smart assistant, which can be called to action using the phrase Hey Siri, used to only do so if the smartphone was plugged into a power source.
With the information that was acquired by Apple Insider through a source familiar with the matter, it is believed that the Hey Siri feature can now be activated even while the iPhone 6S is unplugged. This would allow Apple's Siri to function similarly to the OK Google feature found in Android devices.
The services use the same hotwording technology which allows users to carry out a variety of tasks such as searching on the Internet, composing messages, initiating voice calls, launching smartphone functions and applications and many more, without needing to tap or swipe on the screens of their devices.
The updated Hey Siri command will work the same way as it did for previous versions of the smart assistant in older devices and operating system, with users able to activate Siri from anywhere within iOS. Users, while composing a message, can use the Hey Siri feature to quickly check the details of an event that was plotted into the user's calendar.
Apple Insider was not able to determine whether the always-on Hey Siri feature was accomplished solely through an update in the software for the iPhone 6S, as the current beta versions for the iOS 9 do not support the functionality.
Compared to Android devices which support the always-on OK Google feature, these smartphones utilize a unique voice activation monitoring chip to power up the device without causing a huge impact on the battery life. This would suggest that the always-on Hey Siri feature was done through an update in the hardware components of the iPhone 6S.
The update to the feature is a logical next step for Siri, considering that the Apple Watch also had a voice-activated version of the smart assistant. While Siri on the Apple Watch does not perpetually monitor for the user to mention keywords, the feature can be activated by the user raising his wrist and then saying the Hey Siri command.
Siri is also expected to be an important component of Apple's revamped Apple TV, which will also be integrating the smart assistant. The new device will also be unveiled at Apple's Sept. 9 event.