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Apple's rumored PrimeSense buy may open Siri's eyes

Mark Hachman | Nov. 19, 2013
For years, technologies like Apple's Siri and Google's Google Now have been flying blind, awoken by the spoken command of their users. If Apple acquires PrimeSense, perceptual computing may finally open its eyes.

Meanwhile, Google designed the Moto X smartphone to constantly listen for spoken commands, also with a dedicated chip. For now, however, Apple's Siri needs a bit of prompting to wake up.

That could change. Integrating PrimeSense wouldn't mean that tomorrow's iPhone would integrate an always-on camera. But with a battery life that already exceeds eleven hours, phones like the iPhone 5S can spare a few milliwatts—especially if they're smart enough to turn the camera off when it's inside your pocket.

As of now, there's no indication that an iWatch or an Apple version of Google Glass is in the works, although Apple has registered the trademark for iSight. Nevertheless, giving Apple eyes and ears into your world suggests some intriguing possibilities. For now, however, they're all the subject of speculation—which is sometimes just as fun as an actual product.


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