Siri's creators are set to launch a new app-less AI assistant, Viv
Dag Kittlaus and Adam Cheyer want to revolutionise how we interact with online services
The original creators of Siri, the virtual assistant Apple acquired in 2010, have unveiled a new voice assistant called Viv, which does not rely on any app nor require the user to even touch their phone.
Viv works entirely through voice commands, the Washington Post reports, allowing people to do things such as book tickets or order food from start to finish without ever tapping or typing on their phone, or downloading any third-party app.
The product is powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and large volumes of data, with the ambition to completely revolutionise the way consumers interact with services and businesses online.
Dag Kittlaus, co-creator (along with colleague Adam Cheyer) of Viv, said: "It's about taking the way that humans have naturally interacted with each other for thousands of years and applying that to the way they interact with services. Everyone knows how to hold a conversation."
Viv will reportedly be revealed next week and has already secured $12.5 million in funding. It has also partnered with 50 companies including Uber, Grubhub and SeatGuru.
The technology has tech giants Google and Facebook interested in acquiring the service, according to the WSJ, as companies scramble to find the next big thing in AI technology. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has already invested in Viv through Iconiq Capital.
"Our goal is ubiquity," Kittlaus added. "There's no way to predict where that goes except to say we'll pick the path that gets us there. Either way, we will finish the job."
Facebook launched it's own personal assistant for its Messenger service last year, offering an alternative to Siri, Google Now and Microsoft's Cortana. The service utilised human assistants alongside AI capabilities, allowing the service to learn enough to eventually be sophisticated enough to surpass the need for human intervention.
Apple recently hired at least 86 new AI specialists to work on Siri, hoping to make it 'smarter' than its rivals.
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