Phil Schiller hints at a new Apple voice-driven assistant to rival Amazon Echo and Google Home

Apple executive Phil Schiller has revealed he is not a fan of devices such as Amazon Echo and Google Home, boosting expectations that the tech giants could be about to launch its own rival product.

Speaking to Gadgets 360 during a trip to launch Apple’s app accelerator facility in Bengaluru, India, Schiller was asked for his thoughts on the devices.

“My mother used to have a saying that if you don’t have something nice to say, say nothing at all,” he said.

Amazon Echo and Google Home both rely on inbuilt voice assistants, allowing users to issue voice commands, carry out ‘conversations’ and execute smart home tasks such as setting a thermostat or accessing security features.

Apple do not yet have a comparable product but Schiller suggested that the company would continue to concentrate on apps and devices that combined voice assistance with screens.

“We believe deeply in voice-driven assistants that’s why invest in Siri, but there is interest in a voice-only assistant, where there is no screen, and we think it’s important that there are times when it’s convenient to simply use your voice when you are not able to use the screen,” he told Gadgets 360.

He added that while a voice assistant could be “really beneficial” at times, having access to a touchscreen device was still essential in a number of different areas. He listed games as one such area, saying he had yet to see a voice-only game that was as fun to play as an on-screen one, with maps and photography.

With maps, voice control can be used to provide directions as the map changes to show the user their surroundings on-screen, while Siri can be used with photo viewing apps to search by date and location in addition to sharing content via content sheets.

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