Apple Has a Siri-ous Problem

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A few years ago, the idea of speaking to your cell phone and getting a response was like something out of a sci-fi movie. Nowadays, if your smartphone doesn't offer voice recognition technology, you're likely missing out on some possibilities. Between Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL  ) Now and Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) Siri, I'm sure you've heard about a thing or two about voice recognition technology. Perhaps what you haven't heard is how Google Now for iOS has completely undermined Apple Siri, to the point where it may threaten Apple's coveted halo.

Google does it better
Let's face it: Apple's Siri hasn't really made much of a splash with users. It's often dismissed as a nice-to-have feature because it lacks the usefulness for everyday smartphone use. Sure, you can use Siri to control your phone, which could come in handy while driving, but when it comes down to searching for answers, Siri often falls short. That's because Siri lacks the wealth of data and experience that Google has been building over the last 15 years.

Google Now leverages all of your Google user data to improve relevancy, context, and timing. If you have an appointment scheduled in Google Calendar, Google Now would display that information and give you the best driving directions in terms of real-time traffic. Check out the video below to get a better sense how Google Now works.

The opportunity of a lifetime
Because Google has a wealth of personalized data to leverage, it has the out-of-the-box capability to that Siri simply cannot match. It would take significant data mining and leg work on Apple's part to get Siri on par with Google Now. Ultimately, this opportunity could be much larger for Google than just being a better Siri for iOS users, because Google Now gives Apple users a real taste of the Android experience. It leaves me wondering if Google Now will awaken Apple users entranced by the coveted halo effect.

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Read/Post Comments (12) | Recommend This Article (10)

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  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 7:15 PM, makelvin wrote:

    "...Sure, you can use Siri to control your phone, which could come in handy while driving, but when it comes down to searching for answers, Siri often falls short..."

    The purpose of Siri was never meant for it to be used as a replacement to typing in for search results. Apple is trying to brand Siri as an digital personal assistant. I personally use it to help me set up reminders and appointments a lot more than for search functions. To think that Siri is simply trying to make it convenient for someone so they don't have to type into the search box is completely missing the point.

    Google Now on iOS will never be able to do the kind of assistant function that Apple has in mind. Google Now is simply a voice recognition technology that replaces typing. Siri was meant to be an artificial intelligence engine that assist. It needs to provide subtle difference within the sentence to understand what the user really want to do. In fact, Siri does not even do any voice recognition at all, it uses Nuance's voice recognition for the front end processing of the voice. The author is completely missing the point here.

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 7:26 PM, gettmoney wrote:

    infothathelp is not going to like this

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 7:28 PM, Jjkiam wrote:

    Who is this author a paid Google employee? Has he ever used Siri and does he have any clue how it also integrates usage over time to make recommendations ? How it also can integrate your calendar etc ? I mean Be Honest You were paid to write this crap without any attempt to be honest

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 8:23 PM, techy46 wrote:

    "Google Now leverages all of your Google user data " that would be a big fat zero since I would never share or put anything in or on Google or Facebook. Google's (Android) an insidious social virus and I do not want to catch it.

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 8:28 PM, FreeRange1 wrote:

    Showing your colors much when you make such ridiculous statements? "...because Google Now gives Apple users a real taste of the Android experience. It leaves me wondering if Google Now will awaken Apple users entranced by the coveted halo effect."

    How about a real taste of....

    Half of all Android phones sold are running a version of the OS that is at least 3 generations old and not upgradable.

    Android has exponentially more malware than any mobile OS - Apple and Windows 8, zero. In fact Android is so bad it's now being called the new Windows XP as a magnet for malware developers.

    Android users are at the mercy of the cellular operators for all updates, which can take months to update,and at times not at all. Apple updates are automatic to all immediately upon release.

    The iPhone, nearly infinitely customizable with almost a billion apps. The highest customer satisfaction levels, by far. The most reliable smartphone, by far. The highest resale value, by far. And on and on and on....

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 8:48 PM, FreeRange1 wrote:
  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 9:39 PM, Acttorneyatliar wrote:

    Well, the Apple employee trolls are out in full in defense against this article. They are funny.

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 9:47 PM, walterraleigh555 wrote:

    I suddenly realize Motley Fool is just another advertisement faking to be legit article writer.

    It stirs up all kinds of things hoping you will buy their "stock tips".

    This will be the last Motley Fool article I read.

    As for malware, do yourselves a favor and read this:

  • Report this Comment On May 14, 2013, at 9:51 PM, CalvinballPro wrote:

    Uh-oh, that garden wall isn't as high as you were promised. The real world is intruding on the startled iOS users! Oh noes!!

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2013, at 2:47 AM, Greenapple3317 wrote:

    I love how android users can't talk facts, they try to only make fun of Apple users. The FACYS are android has malware issues, Goggle tracks everything and sells it, if you recall FACT, they were busted for that very same thing. I like security over a phone selling my personal information. I've never seen a android user using Now, and I travel 50% of time and are around cell users all the time. I've also noted that I see more iPhones while traveling by a 80% to 20 % margin. Must be the droid users are kids who 's parents won't let them out until their homework is completed.

  • Report this Comment On May 15, 2013, at 5:50 AM, impulse101 wrote:

    haha who still uses iphones beside the tech illiterate who think there really is a malware issue. look at these posts by sheep who have no idea of what they are talking about. Google Now does EVERYTHING siri does and much better. I am sorry that you are delusional and still trying to justify your purchase of your little iphone with its stagnant screen of icons. wake up anf face it Android is better than IOS by a huge margin. It's sad to see the ignorant missing out on superior products and tecnology due to blind fanboyism. It's funny but also very sad, but I am glad most IOS users are waking up as you can see by Androids 75 percent dominance in q1 2013 versus IOS dropping like a rock to only 18 percent. LOL!

  • Report this Comment On July 12, 2013, at 5:31 PM, bamm750 wrote:

    So Apple's problem with Google is my problem too? Bing integration into Siri with no way to change it. Ridiculous.

    I'm jumping ship after owning iPhone since 2008 (jailbroken for most of the time) and heading to Android (seems natural as I'm a Linux user since 2000 anyway.) The HTC One (black) is most awesome. I'll keep my IPhone for some apps, but that's about it.

    Btw: I also use Google Now on my iPhone 4 (which does not support Siri) and it works flawlessly. I love it!

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