Apple hoping to turn voicemail to text messages

Apple is reportedly working on a major iOS update that could enable its devices to convert voicemail recordings into text messages.

According to CNET, the Californian tech giant is currently testing a transcription service using Siri, the personal assistant that comes with its iPhone and iPad devices.

It is thought the feature could respond to unwanted calls with a personal note, before creating a transcript of the caller’s voice message, to be read whenever the user is ready. Seeing how it’s quicker to leave messages orally, but receive them visually, it could save plenty of time for busy mobile users.

Reports from Business Insider claim the team at Apple is currently testing the service with a view to launching an update at some point in 2016. This makes it unlikely that iPhone owners will see the new feature packaged with iOS 9, which is expected to be released next month. Instead, it’s more likely that it will be part of iOS 10 next year.

Apple isn’t the first to offer a voicemail-to-SMS conversion service; users of Google’s Android operating system can already access transcriptions through the Google Voice feature. If the trials come to fruition, however, it will be the first time that such capabilities are made available to iPhone users.