It was clear from the debut of iOS 5 that our new beloved personal assistant Siri has a lot of potential. And we're finally beginning to see what direction this potential may take in the near future.
According to published reports Thursday, Apple's Siri may soon be updated to help users in their mobile shopping endeavors. More specifically, voice commands may be able to facilitate mobile-web based transactions.
The reason for this newfound speculation comes on the heels of a patent application discovery this week by our friends at Apple Insider. Titled "Intelligent Automated Assistant," the application highlights how Siri may be used as a mobile shopping tool down the road.
With e-commerce functionality added to Siri, a user could ask their iPhone to purchase a new song, album, TV episode or movie through Apple's iTunes Store. Similarly, transactions through the iBookstore or even the App Store could theoretically be initiated.
If you're in a hurry for this rumored new feature, all signs point to Apple being in a hurry too. According to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the patent referenced above was first filed in January 2011. During the past year, it is believed that Apple has aggressively worked to prepare a number of significant Siri tweaks in time for iOS updates which may not be far off.
Sources: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Apple Insider