Google, Microsoft Suggest Apple's Siri Will Make People Look Crazy
October 20, 2011 12:08 PM
"You shouldn’t be communicating with the phone" -- Andy Rubin, Google
Microsoft Corp. (
) CEO Steve Ballmer
on Tuesday showed love
for Apple, Inc.'s (
) iPhone and its
"humble personal assistant" Siri
conference, stating, "Apple is a good competitor, but a different one. Both [an iPhone and a Windows phone] are going to feel very good in your hand and both going to look very beautiful physically…"
But the next day his underling, Windows Phone Chief Andy Lees, was far less charitable. He
that Siri isn't "super useful" and argued that the similar voice assistant functionality found on Windows Phone 7 Mango is more useful. Despite the fact that Siri uses the internet and plugs in to services like Wolfram Alpha (and, ironically Bing), he chastises that it's not a truly connected solution. He says that Windows Phone's Bing-driven implementation gives you "the full power of the internet, rather than a certain subset."
Windows Phone Chief Andy Lees gets queried by Ina Fried. [Source: AllThingsD]
He also said that Microsoft generally doesn't agree with Apple's premise of generally barking commands into your phone in public, though Microsoft does support such interaction targeted at specific environments, such as in the privacy of your car.
Similar criticisms were
Android chief, Google, Inc. (
) SVP Andy Rubin. He comments, "I don't believe that your phone should be an assistant. Our phone is a tool for communicating. You shouldn’t be communicating with the phone; you should be communicating with somebody on the other side of the phone."
Google SVP and Android chief Andy Rubin [Source: AllThingsD]
When it comes to talking to
on the phone, he argues that's perfectly normal, stating, "To some degree it is natural for you to talk to your phone."
But when it comes to talking to a sassy AI agent he expresses skepticism that it will be a healthy or popular exercise. He states, "We’ll see how pervasive it gets."
And he says that the tech
is nothing new
. He pointed out that Android co-founder Rich Miner worked to bake a similar cellphone speech assistant into his company's OS, but that Google opted to stick with just commands, not a more talkative assistant.
He did offer some faint praise for Apple's app, admitting that it is polished, at the very least. He remarks, "This isn’t a new notion. In projecting the future, I think Apple did a good job of figuring out when the technology was ready to be consumer-grade."
"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007
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