Second Siri Co-Founder Adam Cheyer Leaves Apple Ahead Of New Features In iOS 6 [Updated]

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Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer has left Apple.
Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer has left Apple.

Former Siri CEO Dag Kittlaus left Apple last year, and now the revolutionary platform’s other co-founder has reportedly left Apple as well. According to Bloomberg, Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer recently left Apple for unknown reasons.

Apple bought Siri back in April of 2010 for a rumored $200 million, and Siri has since become a staple feature of the iPhone 4S and iPad. Given the imminent public release of the new and improved Siri in iOS 6, Cheyer’s departure is interestingly timed.

Adam Cheyer, an engineer who helped build the Siri voice-recognition software that was acquired by Apple Inc., is no longer working for the iPhone maker, according to three people familiar with the situation.

Cheyer, a Siri co-founder and its former vice president of engineering, left recently after working in Apple’s mobile software group, said one of the people, who all asked not to be identified as the matter is confidential.

Apple CEO Tim Cook acknowledged Siri’s room for improvement at a recent AllThingsD interview:

“Yes it [Siri] could be broader, but Siri as a feature has moved into the mainstream. So I think you’re going to be really happy with where it’s going. We’re doubling down on it.”

iOS 6 includes multiple improvements to Siri, including the ability to give sports scores, movie ticket info, book restaurant tables, launch apps, and update Twitter and Facebook. Plagued by early server outages, Siri also seems to be more reliable lately. Perhaps Cheyer is simply no longer needed in Cupertino.

Whatever the reasons may be, both of the men behind Siri are no longer working on the technology at Apple.

Update: AllThingsD notes that Cheyer left Apple back in June. Xconomy has an email from the Siri co-founder:

Adam Cheyer, the chief technical architect behind the Siri virtual personal assistant technology in Apple’s iPhone 4S, confirmed a report today that he has resigned from Apple.

“I left Apple for personal reasons some time ago,” Cheyer told Xconomy by e-mail today.

In the email, Cheyer said that he is still “very bullish on the future for Siri.”

Source: Bloomberg