Monday, June 23, 2014, 03:39 pm PT (06:39 pm ET)
Apple looking to expand Siri localization with at least 9 new languagesA number of recently discovered jobs listings on Apple's website hint at future Siri localization, with the company looking to hire native speakers of languages used in burgeoning markets like Brazil and Russia.
According to Apple's "Jobs at Apple" website, the company is seeking "Siri Language Engineers" fluent in Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, Danish, Dutch, Norwegian, Swedish, Thai, Turkish and Russian, all of which are currently unsupported by the voice recognizing digital assistant. The job postings were first uncovered by MacRumors.
Along with the nine new languages, Apple is looking to enhance Siri's existing lexicon with hires fluent in Australian and British English, Cantonese and Japanese. All listings ask not only for fluency, but for native speakers to handle colloquialisms locals may use when speaking to Siri. Apple also strives to make Siri's own speech as natural as possible, meaning the potential hires will likely be working on responses to user queries.
Most listings, posted between June 10 and June 19, also require candidates to have strong software development skills to be plied toward speech recognition, natural language processing, machine learning and speech synthesis.
Tasks for many Siri Language Engineers include developing natural language processing code and providing input toward new features applicable to a target market, suggesting location-specific Siri assets may be deployed in the near future.
Since Siri's introduction in iOS 5, Apple has been constantly upgrading its virtual assistant to handle increasingly complex tasks. For example, Siri will roll in integrated smart home commands when the upcoming iOS 8 operating system debuts later this year.
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