10-20-2011 02:17 PM
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  1. KingCrimson's Avatar
    The app store version of Siri and the 4S version are light years apart - the orignal was released before Apple bought the company and was left in the app store as a legacy app. It was barely more advanced than the built-in voice control that shipped wth iOS4. It hasn't been pulled to screw customers but to avoid customers potentially buying the app thinking it's the new version and wasting their money.

    As for Siri's appeal, you know what? I reckon it's not primarily for us (and by "us" I mean people with a fairly good grasp of tech). It's for people who don't like computers and smartphones but like what they can do. Now, they can ask questions the way they'd ask someone in the room with them. That's a huge market segment Apple may have just unlocked.
    You say that - but I guarantee you that within 5 years even YOU will be planning that next trip to Italy using Siri or something like it. Don't tell me you just love typing for the heck of it.

    Bottom line the fundamental difference between Siri and TellMe/Google Voice Actions is that Siri is a natural language semantic engine. You can actually teach it to do things.

    F.e. you will tell your iPhone "call my wife". Siri doesn't know who your wife is yet, so it will ask you to associate Wife<-->Contact. After you teach it that, all further requests will just immediately dial your wife.

    Or take travel planning. You will say "Siri, let's plan my trip". Siri will ask what the dates are, where you are going, lead you to book your flight, hotel, car rental, whatever. Siri is a semantic AI engine that implements complex workflows. TellMe just implements one atomic command at a time, no workflow. As a software engineer, I find this very interesting.
    10-11-2011 11:29 PM
  2. Pronk's Avatar
    Oh yeah, I'd use it a lot - I'm a fan of any big innovation. What I meant is, the immediate appeal of it will be to people who are more technophobic. Apple are very good at making technology more accessible, and making more of the functionality of that technology more accesible* and this is another example of it.

    *I remember reading somewhere once that iPhone users on average use 70-80% of the functions of their phones, compared to Nokia N95 users (it was a while ago!) who had arguably more functionality but only used 30-40% of it on average because it was less user friendly to use. Which is why I genuinely believe that eventually more user-friendly systems such as WP7 and iOS will overtake Android unless it gets a lot more refined and less fiddly.
    10-12-2011 03:49 AM
  3. bikehere's Avatar
    There is a general low level animosity with Apple here...which is fine. This is a Windows site after all! However remember that Siri isn't something that Apple created over a short period of time. There is some serious science behind it (Siri has been evolving for almost a decade), and Apple has spent a lot of time figuring how to integrate it into IOS. So it's not just another "feature". Most responses (the Android folk especially), is "bah, had something like this since 2008". But this is not just word recognition...Siri understands *context* - that is not something easy to do...
    10-12-2011 09:55 AM
  4. Curtieson's Avatar
    How do you say Siri...

    Is it Sir-ee or Sear-ee? or Sir-eye or Sear-eye?
    10-12-2011 10:35 AM
  5. HeyCori's Avatar
    How do you say Siri...

    Is it Sir-ee or Sear-ee? or Sir-eye or Sear-eye?
    I thought it was See-Re, but I'm not entirely sure.
    10-12-2011 10:40 AM
  6. threed61's Avatar
    The app store version of Siri and the 4S version are light years apart - the orignal was released before Apple bought the company and was left in the app store as a legacy app. It was barely more advanced than the built-in voice control that shipped wth iOS4. It hasn't been pulled to screw customers but to avoid customers potentially buying the app thinking it's the new version and wasting their money.

    As for Siri's appeal, you know what? I reckon it's not primarily for us (and by "us" I mean people with a fairly good grasp of tech). It's for people who don't like computers and smartphones but like what they can do. Now, they can ask questions the way they'd ask someone in the room with them. That's a huge market segment Apple may have just unlocked.
    Its also being turned off on phones that already have it, I'm pretty sure that's not to prevent people from wasting their money.
    10-12-2011 11:24 AM
  7. Pronk's Avatar
    Devs kill old apps - it happens. There's not really much point trying to frame Apple terminating an old, outdated version of something that's now a system feature as an anti-customer conspiracy. It's just progress and not wanting to confuse the situation. Besides, MS cut a load of features that WM6.5 had from WP7 - some of which still aren't back even post-Mango - so I don't think we can really call Apple out on this!
    10-12-2011 11:31 AM
  8. KingCrimson's Avatar
    There is a general low level animosity with Apple here...which is fine. This is a Windows site after all! However remember that Siri isn't something that Apple created over a short period of time. There is some serious science behind it (Siri has been evolving for almost a decade), and Apple has spent a lot of time figuring how to integrate it into IOS. So it's not just another "feature". Most responses (the Android folk especially), is "bah, had something like this since 2008". But this is not just word recognition...Siri understands *context* - that is not something easy to do...
    That's my point. I think the Apple virtual assistant is the biggest thing to happen to smartphones since the iPhone came out in 2007.
    10-12-2011 11:37 AM
  9. threed61's Avatar
    Devs kill old apps - it happens. There's not really much point trying to frame Apple terminating an old, outdated version of something that's now a system feature as an anti-customer conspiracy. It's just progress and not wanting to confuse the situation. Besides, MS cut a load of features that WM6.5 had from WP7 - some of which still aren't back even post-Mango - so I don't think we can really call Apple out on this!
    Who said conspiracy? Apple quite openly turned off a product that worked fine for people on its first 4 iphone models, and made its replacement only available on the 4s. A customer friendly company would let users decide whether they wanted to continue using the old siri.
    10-12-2011 12:05 PM
  10. Curtieson's Avatar
    Who said conspiracy? Apple quite openly turned off a product that worked fine for people on its first 4 iphone models, and made its replacement only available on the 4s. A customer friendly company would let users decide whether they wanted to continue using the old siri.

    I thought Siri was available on all phones with iOS5, which was all phones 3GS and later.
    10-12-2011 12:26 PM
  11. starblade876's Avatar
    Or take travel planning. You will say "Siri, let's plan my trip". Siri will ask what the dates are, where you are going, lead you to book your flight, hotel, car rental, whatever. Siri is a semantic AI engine that implements complex workflows. TellMe just implements one atomic command at a time, no workflow. As a software engineer, I find this very interesting.
    Honestly, that sounds as tedious as dialing voicemail if you have visual voicemail. Options, I assume, will have to be read one by one in some sort of order. I can only see it being useful/safe when doing something very monotonous like running/jogging/walking. In terms of tech, yes, it's an impressive feat towards AI and voice recognition. In terms of practicality, it doesn't seem that useful to me.
    10-12-2011 01:40 PM
  12. Coffee's Avatar
    I thought Siri was available on all phones with iOS5, which was all phones 3GS and later.
    the Siri app used to be in iTunes, now it's gone and only available on the 4S.
    10-12-2011 01:42 PM
  13. HeyCori's Avatar
    I like TellMe and I don't particularly think MS should try to copy Siri. However I do hope that MS updates TellMe with more commands. With all that TellMe can do I just can't shake the feeling that it should do more.
    10-12-2011 01:48 PM
  14. Coffee's Avatar
    That's my point. I think the Apple virtual assistant is the biggest thing to happen to smartphones since the iPhone came out in 2007.
    I may be shortsighted, but I don't see it. At least not until Siri can do everything you want on a phone, not just certain tasks.

    I love having hands-free voice control on texting, calling, etc while in the car. But I'm not going to sit at work and tell my phone to call my wife, I'm just going to hit the button. Nor am I going to compose a text to my friend to see if they want to go to Best Buy at lunch by talking to Siri and have everyone at work listen in. Not that it's private, but if I wanted them to hear, I would've called.

    I'm not going to tell the phone to book me on a flight to Sydney and then listen while Siri walks me through all the possible options of times, dates, rental cars, hotels when I can do it on one page on a travel app in about a minute.


    I think Siri is cool, and has its applicable functions on the phone, but only for certain things at certain times, and that's the limitation. Many tasks just aren't applicable by even the best of speech analyzers because they're better suited to a couple mouse/finger clicks.

    But, as always, I could be wrong.
    threed61 and power5 like this.
    10-12-2011 01:51 PM
  15. astroXP's Avatar
    I'm not really worried about Siri as of now because I communicate more in Spanish than English (Siri currently supports English, Franais, Deutsche only) but natural voice recognization is definitely something I'd like to have my hands on.

    One thing I like about Apple marketing and that they promote things like no one else had thought of it or done before OR they just go the extra mile; and the lucky SOBs gain more momentum - the iPhone 5 was a huge let down but was quickly forgotten when Siri when came out.

    Sure Microsoft is working on a more advanced TellMe but before everyone's eyes, Apple won because it was first.

    Take a look at Microsoft's vision for TellMe
    Last edited by astroXP; 10-12-2011 at 03:01 PM.
    10-12-2011 02:19 PM
  16. Winterfang's Avatar
    Let me just say something. I was playing with Bing and used the microsoft and I said Kinect. And it searched the word P.enis >_> at least they No results on the images.
    10-12-2011 03:10 PM
  17. based_graham's Avatar
    I bet MS is slowly going to add more voice commands to their OS next update commands to access more applications like Calendar, Zune, Xbox etc but I think MS is seeing how Siri really plays out before dropping a huge bomb.

    With a MS ecosystem imagine an A.I like Siri which you could use to use multiple devices. So imagine this you call tell your phone and say "Hey turn on my Xbox 360 and go to HBO Go and play Boardwalk empire" with proper networking this can be done." So not only can you control your phone you can control other MS devices with your phone.
    10-12-2011 04:25 PM
  18. threed61's Avatar
    If this becomes as wildly popular as other iproducts, I wonder how long it will be before the same folks who are bothered by the use of cellphones in public will start griping about 'that talking phone thing'. Voice command tools are wonderful for the car.
    10-12-2011 04:32 PM
  19. based_graham's Avatar
    Also MS has Bing which they can utilize for Tellme Apple doesn't have their own search engine
    10-12-2011 04:39 PM
  20. Winterfang's Avatar
    I've struggling for about a minute for Bing to search the world Drink correctly. It has send me to brink, mink, pink, booty and bing.
    10-12-2011 08:32 PM
  21. KingCrimson's Avatar
    I see the virtual Assistant converting at least 10 million Android users in the next 6 months.
    10-12-2011 08:48 PM
  22. Airanp's Avatar
    I personally would feel like a bafoon holding a conversation with my phone. I like giving it commands and the voice to text stuff is awesome. I am pretty sure we can see more from the Tell Me service in the future but I for one am not too bothered by Siri. Siri, really?!
    KingCrimson and power5 like this.
    10-12-2011 09:35 PM
  23. KingCrimson's Avatar
    I personally would feel like a bafoon holding a conversation with my phone. I like giving it commands and the voice to text stuff is awesome. I am pretty sure we can see more from the Tell Me service in the future but I for one am not too bothered by Siri. Siri, really?!
    Obviously the more involved workflows will happen in privacy. I mean doesn't everyone do their trip bookings like that anyways? Anyways the #1 feature I lust after is the Calendar. Just picking up the phone and telling it I have some appointment would be such a BOON to me because right now I manually enter in everything to Google calendar.
    10-12-2011 09:39 PM
  24. power5's Avatar
    Devs kill old apps - it happens. There's not really much point trying to frame Apple terminating an old, outdated version of something that's now a system feature as an anti-customer conspiracy. It's just progress and not wanting to confuse the situation. Besides, MS cut a load of features that WM6.5 had from WP7 - some of which still aren't back even post-Mango - so I don't think we can really call Apple out on this!
    Yes, but MS did not take away those features from wm6.5 users. I've never had an app I bought removed by a company either.

    I bet MS is slowly going to add more voice commands to their OS next update commands to access more applications like Calendar, Zune, Xbox etc but I think MS is seeing how Siri really plays out before dropping a huge bomb.

    With a MS ecosystem imagine an A.I like Siri which you could use to use multiple devices. So imagine this you call tell your phone and say "Hey turn on my Xbox 360 and go to HBO Go and play Boardwalk empire" with proper networking this can be done." So not only can you control your phone you can control other MS devices with your phone.
    Apple has a load of devices as well. Apple TV which can do the same as xbox, macs, air port, time machine, ipods...... they are equal in their ecosystems. Probably a good reason for that.

    I see the virtual Assistant converting at least 10 million Android users in the next 6 months.
    I find it hard to believe that the users of the most customizable tinkering mobile devices will be switching in mass to apple because of a talking AI which does many things for them.



    I must be more private than I thought. I could never use a BT headset because it seems less private than holding my phone to my ear. Even though my voice is just as loud probably, it seems to me that I pay more attention to peoples conversations on BT headsets than I do to people talking with a phone to their ear. I actually give them some privacy. I find myself wanting to scream into the headset of the BT users. :D I just see Siri as a neat gadget I would play with for a month and then hardly ever touch again. At least until its well integrated into cars. As it is now, they show people with headphones on driving cars in the demo. That is illegal in my state. So only other way to get Siri to listen is to find your phone in the cupholder and press the home key.
    10-12-2011 09:41 PM
  25. power5's Avatar
    Obviously the more involved workflows will happen in privacy. I mean doesn't everyone do their trip bookings like that anyways? Anyways the #1 feature I lust after is the Calendar. Just picking up the phone and telling it I have some appointment would be such a BOON to me because right now I manually enter in everything to Google calendar.
    Actually my favorite new feature of iOS5 is location based reminders. I could use that a ton. As I am leaving my house is usually when I forget stuff because I am rushing. Of course that sometimes means my phone too. Can Siri help me remember that somehow?
    10-12-2011 09:43 PM
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