What Do iOS 10, macOS Sierra Mean for Apple Users?

Apple CEO Tim Cook and other company executives had plenty of details for developers when they previewed the coming operating system updates for iPhones, Macs and other devices at the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) earlier this month. But what will the fall arrival of iOS 10 and macOS Sierra mean for ordinary Apple users?

One coming iOS 10 feature that generated quite a bit of attention -- not all of it positive -- immediately after the WWDC keynote was its support for a variety of new special effects for texting. For example, Jonathan Zdziarski, an iOS forensics security expert, tweeted afterward: "I wish Apple had taken more time to demo emoji and stickers on the keynote -- No one ever."

Another question that came up frequently after the iOS 10 and macOS Sierra previews concerned Apple's personal digital assistant, Siri. While Siri appears to be set for a significant upgrade, and will be available for the first time on macOS as well as on iOS devices, it remains to be seen how well Apple's AI (artificial intelligence) competes with Microsoft's Cortana or Google Now.

Siri: Smarter, More Voice-Friendly

In a Siri-Cortana head-to-head comparison yesterday, Mashable pronounced a draw between the two. While Siri for macOS is proving faster in response to voice commands, Cortana wins overwhelmingly when answering typed questions and requests, Mashable noted, adding that Microsoft's AI will also be due for an update this summer.

According to Ars Technica's review of Siri, the AI's arrival on macOS "feels a little tacked-on, despite answering many queries just as it does in iOS." For macOS users accustomed to handling queries through Apple's Spotlight instead, Siri's arrival on the desktop will probably take some time to get used to, Ars Technica added.

Over time, iPhone and iPad users can also expect to see...

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