Apple's OS X 10.9 may feature Siri and homegrown maps

A new report claims Apple's next OS X release will include built-in Siri -- Apple's voice assistant -- along with the company's own maps application.

Martin Scorsese talks up Siri on an iPhone.
Martin Scorsese talks up Siri on an iPhone. Apple

Apple's next major release of its desktop and notebook operating system is once again expected to gain additional features from iOS devices, according to Apple blog 9to5mac.

Citing trusted sources, the blog today says Apple plans to add full-on integration with Siri, the voice assistant that can be found on Apple's iPhones, iPods and iPads.

Apple already took the first step in that direction earlier this year by adding dictation to OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, which was released in July. The dictation feature lets users talk into their microphone and transcribe into text, but it does not go the extra step to turn spoken queries into actions on the computer.

Along with Siri, the report says Apple also plans to add its own maps within OS X, specifically to let developers make use of the feature within their own applications. Apple debuted its Maps in June at its annual developers conference, though only for iOS, and formally released it as part of iOS 6 in September -- to, well, mixed reviews .

Apple has sped up its development cycles for major releases of OS X, releasing Mountain Lion just a year after its predecessor, Lion. Both iOS and OS X are also now under the management of the same senior executive, Craig Federighi, who formerly managed just the Mac group.

Apple began carrying iOS features over to Mac OS with 10.7 Lion in 2010. While introducing the new OS update to reporters, CEO Steve Jobs mused that some of the features were inspired by imagining the results "if a MacBook and an iPad hooked up." Some of those first features included a new app launcher, FaceTime video conferencing, and the Mac App Store -- a built-in software installer. That trend continued with Mountain Lion this year, which gained a handful of apps that began on iOS, like reminders, notification center, Game Center and AirPlay.

If recent history is any guide, it's safe to assume 10.9 won't make its debut until next year. Apple provided a surprise sneak peek of Mountain Lion this past February, giving developers about five months to get their software ready.

 

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