There may come a time when Siri can help you buy a new flatscreen TV from the comfort of your bed, but for now the gal’s capabilities are limited.
For the misfits and troublemakers who have jailbroken their iPhone 4S, there’s a new app that promises to change that. It’s called MyAssistant, and for 99 cents on third-party app market Cydia, it gives Siri much deeper access to your system settings and software than Apple offers out of the box.
How deep you might be wondering? Once installed it lets you do things like reboot your phone, take a photo, change the way Siri looks, and even launch applications with voice commands. Users can also train the voice assistant to offer up custom replies to questions, something that really may not be all that useful unless you’re at a cocktail party and want to play a trick on your friends.
The software, which was profiled by the iDownloadblog yesterday, is the latest in a series of third-party tweaks to Siri. Earlier efforts include AssistantExtensions and SiriToggles–both add-on software for jailbroken devices that tack on additional features like searching YouTube, launching apps, and running custom extensions written by others. Short of having an official API for Siri from Apple, developers have flocked to jailbroken devices to create tools that go outside the bounds.
As for how many users have jailbroken their phones to be able to use this in the first place, a tally from the Dev-Team (the group that published the A5 processor-compatible jailbreak in late-January) said last week that some 491,325 iPhone 4S users ran the hack that lets them install software from third-party sources. According to MyAssistant’s developer, the software also plays nice with Spire, the third-party hack that gives iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 access to Siri, potentially widening the group who can use this.
Apple has said it plans to add more features to Siri in the future, but hasn’t said what they’ll be. A rumor last November claimed iOS 5.1 would be packing a few new tricks to let users do things like take photos and adjust system toggles including Bluetooth, but even if that’s true, it’s not quite as expansive as this new option offers.
Here’s a video walkthrough of the software put together by the iDownloadblog: