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Apple AirPods as a New Wearables Platform (@neilcybart, @AboveAvalon)

Intriguing take from Neil Cybart about Apple’s AirPods and where the company may be heading with its strategy:

Apple is officially positioning AirPods as the beginning of the end of wired headphones. I would go much further. AirPods are the latest clue that the post-iPhone era is approaching. The writing is on the wall. A pair of AirPods (or even just one AirPod in an ear) and an Apple Watch with cellular connectively will eventually be able to handle many of the most popular tasks currently given to an iPhone.

Update Apple “legend” Bill Atkinson has some intriguing things to say about AirPods and Siri, including some interesting use-cases:

The device on which we arguably use personal assistants most often, the smartphone, is far from ideal. “We’re used to using touch screens, but when you’re in a car, that’s not what you want to do, and you certainly don’t want to be looking at a display,” Atkinson reasons.

Atkinson says that as Siri gets more intelligent, it may be able to recognize certain important sounds in the environment. For example, if a user hears a siren while driving, the AirPods might immediately mute any messages or other audio.

In the ear, Siri is more discreet and polite as a notifications device. Sensors in the device will know if you are in conversation, and will break in only with the most important verbal notifications. “John, if you don’t leave now you will miss your meeting with IBM.” That’s far more discreet than getting buzzed on one’s wrist as a cue to look down at some update.

“Your personal digital assistant needs to understand what you’re saying, and be able to piece together concepts even from your quiet mumblings,” Atkinson says. “It will understand the difference between a sequitur and a non sequitur; a simple transcribing technology wouldn’t understand that.”

The assistant needs to understand when the user is talking about taboo subjects, or saying something that’s politically incorrect,” Atkinson says. “I think we will slowly get there.”

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