Apple announced a ton of great stuff during their Worldwide Developers Conference in June 2016, such as macOS Sierra , iOS 10 , and updates to watchOS and tvOS .
In an unprecedented, yet widely welcomed move, Apple opened Siri up to developers, enabling Siri to work with third party apps such as Whatsapp or Facebook.
Apple under Steve Jobs was known to heavily guard its ecosystem and built a walled garden around its apps and services. Since the arrival of Tim Cook however, Apple has made several welcome moves to open up its ecosystem little by little, such as allowing third party keyboards and widgets in iOS 10, and now providing developers with Siri’s SDK.
This move, if exploited well by developers, can infinitely increase Siri’s usefulness.
However, the celebrations are a bit premature as there is a caveat. A big one at that.
When Siri launches with iOS 10 in September, it won’t be available for use in all applications, but only a select few.
In fact, Siri is only limited to six categories of applications, which does not include music and multimedia apps. There are strict restrictions in place regarding which kind of applications Siri can integrate with, and which kind it cannot.
Here’s what you can currently do with the new Siri in iOS 10 :
Apps like Lyf can integrate with Siri allowing you to book a cab with your voice.
You can search photos on apps like Pinterest and EyeEm. This will even support Apple’s new location search for photos demoed during WWDC 2016.
You can ask Siri to “send, search and read back” texts. As of now WeChat and WhatsApp are confirmed to support this feature.
Siri can be used to start your workout, log an activity session, save workouts in many health based apps such as MapMy Run, Runtastic and Runkeeper.
Siri will let users make payments using just their voice. Confirmed apps supporting this feature as of now are Venmo and Square.
Siri in iOS 10 can also be used to initiate phone calls on apps like Skype.
You can try these features out by downloading the iOS 10 beta through beta.apple.com. However, we recommend waiting a few weeks as the official release of iOS 10 is just around the corner. In fact, rumors point to a September 15 release date for iOS 10.