Today, there is a lot of chatter about Apple's Siri-integrated voice assisted feature, rightfully called "Assistant" One of the most mind boggling thing about this feature is that is may require that users upgrade to the iPhone that should be out in a couple of weeks.
The reason for the upgrade is that the new iPhone will have an updated CPU as well as additional memory. I find that part of the report making very sense. Here's why
The iPod touch traditionally follow the iPhone update a few months later. And the main difference between the iPhone and the touch is that the touch has a lower resolution camera and less memory, half that of the iPhone. However, the two devices share the same CPU.
If this pattern follows, that means the next iPod touch will have the same A5 CPU, currently powering the iPad 2, but the iPhone will have 1 GB of RAM as reported but the touch will have 512 MB. Having said that, does that mean the freshly upgraded iPod touch will not be able to enjoy all the new features in iOS 5 such as Assistant?
Obviously not. So, I find it suspect that the new iPhone will be the only iOS device out there come October that can enjoy the new Assistant feature. And yes, it will be the only device because even the iPad 2 has only 512 MB of RAM.
Now, let's chat about the specific need for the A5 chip in order. Why? Siri, as well as Dragon Go, works just fine for the iPhone 3GS and the iPhone 4. It also works pretty well on the current gen iPod touch. And only the iPhone 4 and the touch have to the A4 chip. So, why would Apple suddenly require an A5 ship, again the same chip that powers the iPad 2?
Two possibilities. One, this is an attempt by Apple to force an upgrade to the new hardware. If true, this isn't the first time but definitely doesn't make it less crummy.
Second, the Assistant feature is far more extensive that even what the blogs are reporting. Remember in the past, I wanted the Enterprise computer like ability to hold a conversation with? Well, 9to5Mac reported this but that still seems like a rudimentary feature that is already available on the Android platform.
So, perhaps, Assistant is much more advanced than anyone realizes. Much much more.