Apple Exec Overseeing Siri Departs Role

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 1, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Bill Stasior, who has been heading up Apple's Siri team since 2012, recently left his role as the leader of the voice assistant group, reports The Information.

    Stasior was recruited from Amazon in 2012 to oversee Siri following the departure of Siri co-founders Adam Cheyer and Dag Kittlaus. Cheyer and Kittlaus had joined Apple when the company originally purchased Siri in 2010, but did not stay long.


    According to The Information, Stasior has stepped down from his role as leader of Siri but has not left Apple. The change in leadership is part of a restructuring effort by John Giannandrea, Apple's senior vice president of machine learning and AI strategy, who has taken over the Siri team.

    Giannandrea, who has been pushing the Siri team to "focus more on long-term research" rather than incremental improvements, will be looking for a replacement for Stasior.

    Giannandrea joined Apple in April 2018 as chief of machine learning and AI strategy, and at the time, it was reported that he would be overseeing both the Core ML and Siri teams. Ginnandrea was later promoted to SVP in December 2018.

    Prior to joining Apple, Giannandrea spent eight years at Google, and in the time before that, he founded two companies, Tellme Networks and Metaweb Technologies.

    Giannandrea's hiring came amid widespread criticism of Siri, which has shortcomings in comparison to AI offerings from companies like Microsoft, Amazon, and Google. Apple made serious strides improving Siri in 2018 under Giannandrea's leadership, building out the capabilities of the AI assistant with features like Siri Shortcuts in iOS 12.

    Article Link: Apple Exec Overseeing Siri Departs Role
  2. Scottsoapbox macrumors 6502a


    Oct 10, 2014
  3. hortod1 macrumors regular


    Jan 26, 2009
    Siri knows how to push my buttons without a doubt. And I can’t even return the favor anymore because of FaceID.
  4. PS8409 macrumors member

    Jan 26, 2013
    Apple should hire Alexa’s Exec so Siri could actually become smart. And I’m an Apple fan.
  5. MallardDuck macrumors 6502

    Jul 21, 2014
    "Serious improvements?" Seriously? Shortcuts are workarounds because the engine is deficient.

    Siri still can't even reliably place calls to contacts, instead you get, 'Here's what I found on the web for XXX'. Voice recognition is right up there with Dragon Dictate circa 1993. 'hey siri' invariably turns into 'hold the home button', and on and on.

    Siri needs a new pair of ears, and a better brain.
  6. AngerDanger, Feb 1, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019

    AngerDanger macrumors 68040


    Dec 9, 2008
    Oh, that's the best news I've heard all day! Hopefully, a new executive can bring about greater change than we've seen so far.

    This should never happen when all you want Siri to do is "unpause the music":

  7. dominiongamma macrumors 65816

    Oct 19, 2014
    Tempe, Arizona
    Apple should just use Alexia instead, Siri will never catch up it seems but I know probably would be an issue which sucks
  8. pat500000 macrumors G3


    Jun 3, 2015
    Yeah. It seems there are too many turnover in job sense.
  9. AustinIllini macrumors demi-goddess


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    Apple should just dump Siri and allow you to choose between the actual voice assistants.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 1, 2019 ---
    Apple could also head up a consortium to develop a new assistant as a global, open source standard for AI in North America and beyond.

    But they wouldn't do that.
  10. tbayrgs, Feb 1, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019

    tbayrgs macrumors 603


    Jul 5, 2009
    Alexa may be more versatile thanks to Amazon opening the door to developers to create ‘skills’ but I find her far from intelligent. I’m far more optimistic having Giannandrea and all of his experience from Google at the helm. The Google Assistant is miles ahead of everyone else and if he can bring even a portion of its performance to Siri, it’ll be a huge leap forward from where she stands now.
  11. McTool macrumors 6502


    Feb 14, 2016
    Never heard of the side button?
    Posting statements without knowledge is a thing now.
  12. antiprotest macrumors 65816


    Apr 19, 2010
    OK now put a hamster in his place, or a turtle, or anything that breathes will be an improvement.
  13. Act3 macrumors 68000

    Sep 26, 2014
    Not sure how can one can own a face ID device and not know about the side button.
  14. Col4bin macrumors 68000


    Oct 2, 2011
    El Segundo
    Best to just abandon Siri’s old engine and start again fresh. Otherwise, Apple will be putting lipstick on an outdated 8-yr old pig.
  15. edwrap macrumors member

    Nov 7, 2012
    Can you even attribute Siri Shortcuts to Giannandrea if he joined Apple in April of 2018? Seems like that feature would’ve been well underway by that point.

    Good move, though. Siri has been a joke for awhile now, even if not always deservedly so, and there needed to be a change in leadership there.
  16. genovelle macrumors 6502a

    May 8, 2008
    There nothing really useful alexa does better in my opinion. The things I’ve seen people use it for like playing songs, I’ve done on iPhone by voice long before Alexa or even Siri existed.
  17. chublet macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2018
    Siri is by far the worst thing I have ever encountered with Apple, and years ago we were issued Newtons at work!

    I cannot believe that a 'personal assistant' would be released that cannot understand the most basic commands or questions, and has never once been able to identify music that I wanted it to play - it is now disabled on all my devices.

    Alexa may not be perfect but at least she can play music and tell me the weather...
  18. AustinIllini macrumors demi-goddess


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    I'm inclined to agree. There's no machine learning there. It's a bunch of skills which work well but the actual brain of the thing doesn't seem to be getting any smarter.
  19. HobbesInVA macrumors regular


    Aug 29, 2018
    Chesapeake, VA
    Please terminate Siri. I rather have silence than Siri.
  20. Adam Warlock macrumors regular

    Adam Warlock

    Jun 22, 2016
    Geez, it was fairly obviously a joke. Posting statements without a sense of humour is also a thing now, it seems!
  21. m4mario macrumors member


    May 10, 2017
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Joy to the world, Bill Stasior down!!!
    Instead of doubling down on secrecy (which has never worked), it time to octuple down on AI and customer communication.
  22. confusedpurple macrumors member

    Sep 12, 2018
    I agree I don't find alexa to be 'smart' - it stumbles all the time.

    But compared to Siri it's on a whole other level, mainly due to installable skills, but even more because it can learn and update without you needing to do anything. The weekly 'whats new with alexa' emails are full of new features. I can't remember the last time Siri added a feature.

    One thing I have found is Alexa has got way better at predicting what you've said. If you mumble or mess up a word, its at the point where it can almost always figure out what you were trying to say. Siri can't do that at all and just feels very dated and 'dumb'.

    Apple have no excuse for Siri, its just so far behind now that its not even funny.

    The one thing Amazon has got so right is their attitude towards developers. They come across as very open. Apple come across as arrogant and afraid to open up to the outside world, which is mind bogglingly idiotic when its to freely provide your ai platform with more intelligence.
  23. AustinIllini macrumors demi-goddess


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    This is simply a wiser approach. Privacy is great, but Apple is trustworthy enough users should be able to opt into contributing to a better digital assistant.
  24. itsmilo macrumors 68020


    Sep 15, 2016
    Shortcuts is probably the most complicated thing Apple has ever pushed out and instead of them trying to fix their stupid AI they want us to do it manually like what’s the point

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