Siri cracked, theoretically available on other platforms

The rumors have gone back and forth on whether Siri will become officially supported on Apple hardware that isn't the iPhone 4S, but not so nebulous was the inevitability that enterprising coders would eventually divine Siri's secrets and open her up to other hardware unofficially. And today, exactly one month since Siri's debut on October 14, a design and development studio called Applidium claims to have done just that.

Theoretically, this means that support for Siri could be hacked onto other Apple devices, such as the iPhone 4, iPad 2, iPod Touch and possibly even older devices, through unofficial means such as jailbreaking. The most surprising bit of news, however, is that Applidium claims that by cracking open Siri's protocol, they could also (again, theoretically) write apps that could interface with Siri from Android devices or laptop computers and more.

Of course, there is a huge caveat to that claim - that all data sent to Siri's cloud brain needs a valid iPhone 4S identification string to authenticate. As these strings are unique to each device, any kind of unofficial Siri support would inevitably run into the issue of spoofing unique strings for a potentially huge number of unsupported devices. A large volume of traffic from one or a number of specific IDs would be pretty easy to pick out, reject and blacklist on Apple's end.

Applidium's blog post has a lot of the technical nitty-gritty details on how exactly they accomplished this impressive feat, and also a bit on how Siri itself functions on the backend. It's definitely an interesting read if you're the right type - you know who you are.

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siri is years of research by many smart persons. many may feel it is not that impressive at all. but we usually don't appreciate that how difficult to make a machine just not to look dumb. She will be smarter and smarter. The only sad thing is that Apple has bought her out. The people behind siri probably thought Apple has the money funding more research, mainframes to run siri, and the user base to make her learn faster. But Apple will also leverage her for its own commercial gain. These kind of hacks are futile to set her free from apple.

joysleeper said,
siri is years of research by many smart persons. many may feel it is not that impressive at all. but we usually don't appreciate that how difficult to make a machine just not to look dumb. She will be smarter and smarter. The only sad thing is that Apple has bought her out. The people behind siri probably thought Apple has the money funding more research, mainframes to run siri, and the user base to make her learn faster. But Apple will also leverage her for its own commercial gain. These kind of hacks are futile to set her free from apple.

True a lot of work by a lot of companies and people converged to bring Siri into existence. Sadly, locking down a technology like this as Apple is doing is how progress and these technologies are killed.

The only hope is that Apple doesn't own the ideas or the concepts of Siri, and as they strangle it to death to keep control over it, other companies will rise up to replace it. Microsoft alone is opening up its TellMe technologies that will foster a lot of products that will compete with Siri, until one becomes the market winner.

As an iPhone 4S owner I think Siri is a fantastic feature. It's something I use several times a day and I hope it does get back ported successfully to the older devices so everyone with a 3GS, iPod Touch, iPad and iPhone 4 can benefit. It's excellent.

"data sent to Siri's cloud brain needs a valid iPhone 4S identification string to authenticate."
So if that's true, Apple uses personally identifiable information in order to use the Siri service?

Raa said,
"data sent to Siri's cloud brain needs a valid iPhone 4S identification string to authenticate."
So if that's true, Apple uses personally identifiable information in order to use the Siri service?

It would only be personally identifiable if it was associated with some personal information. If it merely checks that the device is legit, then in no way is it identifying anything personal. It is most likely to work like a serial number validation.

Raa said,
"data sent to Siri's cloud brain needs a valid iPhone 4S identification string to authenticate."
So if that's true, Apple uses personally identifiable information in order to use the Siri service?

No, each phone has a unique identifier most likely, and the Unique Identifier wouldn't be connected to your accounts at all. Just connected to the phone, but I don't know for sure.

De.Bug said,

No, each phone has a unique identifier most likely, and the Unique Identifier wouldn't be connected to your accounts at all. Just connected to the phone, but I don't know for sure.

I don't know but considering all the stigma around collecting personal data just now, I wouldn't imagine so. Also, Considering this has already been hacked to other devices already and is communicating with Apples servers, Im guessing its a single or maybe a combination of a few different keys across the 4S platform.

Unique keys would be too easy to circumvent in the long run. But thats my two cents!

Raa said,
"data sent to Siri's cloud brain needs a valid iPhone 4S identification string to authenticate."
So if that's true, Apple uses personally identifiable information in order to use the Siri service?

Yes welcome to the apple eco system we can and will track everything you do and say to your device

chago12 said,
before siri, there was vlingo, speaktoit, iris... available on android

And before that there was TellMe, and before that inherent non-VoiceXML solutions on Windows Phones and WinCE devices in 2002. (Seriously, go look up the voice features for Windows Phone/PocketPC 2002, for the time, it was rather impressive and worked well, which sparked a lot of phone MFRs to start offering voice dialing and voice commands even on non-smartphones.)

thenetavenger said,

And before that there was TellMe, and before that inherent non-VoiceXML solutions on Windows Phones and WinCE devices in 2002. (Seriously, go look up the voice features for Windows Phone/PocketPC 2002, for the time, it was rather impressive and worked well, which sparked a lot of phone MFRs to start offering voice dialing and voice commands even on non-smartphones.)

Are you a MS employee or fanboy?