A hand holds an iPhone with Siri pulled up on the screen

Many big tech companies, such as Google and Amazon, train and develop their virtual assistants by analyzing as much data about an individual user as they can get their hands on - usually from that user's cloud services and any devices they might have. However, due to its dedication to protecting privacy, Apple does its best to abstain from collecting personally identifiable user data on its servers. In fact, much of the data collected for Siri is done on-device. This changes just a bit every time Apple improves Siri's functions. For example, access to iCloud allows the Siri to learn better and more deeply integrate with the rest of your devices. Apple does plan to allow Siri to communicate across devices to learn more about users - but the change isn't huge. And in instances that do involve the cloud, it is stripped of a user ID and encrypted, thus making it completely anonymous.

In an interview published today for Fast Company, Apple's VP of Marketing Greg Joswiak responded to critics who say that respect for privacy is hindering the development of Siri's AI:

Your device is incredibly powerful, and it's even more powerful with each generation. And with our focus on privacy, we're able to really take advantage of exploiting that power with things like machine learning on your device to create an incredible experience without having to compromise your data.

Apple Senior VP of Software Craig Federighi added to Joswiak's commentary in an email to Fast Company, stating that Siri's power will only increase with iOS 11, macOS High Sierra, tvOS 11 and watchOS 4:

With the software update coming this fall, users will experience even more Siri functionality, and in the years to come it will be ever more integral to the core user experience on all of our platforms.

Thoughts? Questions?

Do you think Apple's steadfast commitment to protecting user data prevents Siri from reaching its full potential? Let us know in the comments!