AWT News Update: May 24, 2016

Just a reminder that the AWT News Update will be on hiatus between May 26 and June 6, returning June 7. Today's news includes stories about a Siri SDK, a beta release, the Apple Watch hurting sales of Swiss Watches, an addition to the search capabilities of the 4th-generation Apple TV, and more!

  • A Siri SDK is expected to be announced at WWDC in June
  • The beta of iOS 9.3.3 has been made available to public beta testers today
  • Swiss watchmakers record a second straight month of double-digit declines in sales
  • More fun with the Apple TV, now with search power for NBC shows
  • Apple closes at $97.90 

The text version of the podcast can be found below.

Text Version

Hi, I’m Steve Sande from Apple World Today, and this is the AWT News Update for May 24, 2016. Just a heads-up — the AWT News Update will not be available between Thursday, May 26 and Monday, June 6, but will be returning on June 7.

We love our rumors when it’s getting close to Apple’s World Wide Developer Conference, and this one is really exciting. Apple is rumored to be developing a Siri Software Development Kit or SDK, which will be announced at WWDC the week of June 13th. The kit will open Siri up to developers, allowing them to give users the ability to ask Siri for information produced by the apps. As an example, let’s say that the Geocaching app is Siri-enabled — you could theoretically ask Siri “Are there any Geocaches hidden within 500 feet?” and get an answer. Or let’s say that you want the ability to make a game move, perform an action in an app, or do any one of a thousand things, all with just a voice command. That’s the power of the Siri SDK. That’s not the Siri rumor news of the day — Apple is also allegedly developing its own hardware competitor to Amazon Echo and Google Home. We don’t know when the device will be released or what it will be called, but bringing Siri to the home without the need to have an iPhone or iPad nearby sounds quite interesting.

iOS 9.3.3 beta has been released to public beta testers following the release to developers yesterday. While no visual changes are apparent, the next release will probably fix some bugs and improve performance of the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch operating system.

Remember the time around the release of the Apple Watch, when Swiss watchmakers were confidently predicting the failure of the device? Well, Swiss Watch exports have experienced a second straight month of double-digit declines in sales according to Abdel Ibrahim at WatchAware. Ibrahim notes that “it does seem like something is affecting people’s willingness to spend more than $3,000 on a high-end Swiss Watch… As the Watch becomes more capable, it’s only going to make the case for wearing a mechanical watch even harder.”

Hey, fourth-generation Apple TV owners! Last month, tvOS gained the ability to use Siri search to find video content from CBS. This month, the universal search feature will let you find content on the NBC network as well. If you want to search for “That episode of Jimmy Fallon with Miley Cyrus”, you’ll now be able to do so. You just need to install the NBC app onto the Apple TV — open the App Store, then search for NBC.

Apple’s share price closed up 1.5% today, up to $97.90 a share. This is all once again due to yesterday’s news that iPhone 7 production estimates are quite a bit higher than anticipated, meaning that Apple is expecting quite a market for the new phone this fall and winter.

We’ll be back tomorrow afternoon with another edition of the AWT News Update.

Cracked Rolex Watch image courtesy of Sand_Junkie on PhotoBucket