If you’re still using Siri, chances are you’ve gotten over its initial personability and gotten used to just how limited it is. Whether it’s understanding what you say or providing the correct information, it can feel very limiting despite the charming voice droning out of your phone. Google’s response was to produce Now, a service that predicted what you wanted to see before you searched for it. Today, they’ve announced some pretty incredible upgrades.
Siri’s had a number of advantages since its unveiling. Geofencing allowed Siri to remind you to trigger events based on where you were, like to call someone when you got home literally as you got home. Geofencing was unveiled as part of the Android APK today and while it wasn’t demonstrated, the capabilities are there. As demonstrated, at Google’s I/O conference, feedback was incredibly easy. Google is weaving all of this, plus the new ability to add reminders, into their existing systems for mass transit directions, their Maps service, and airline information to make it a really incredible experience. That’s simply the advantage Google has from being much larger and having much more information than Apple.
On top of all this, Google is introducing voice commands through your desktop. That’s right, if you have a microphone enabled, you can say “OK Google” and it’ll begin a voice search. Google Search even recognized pronouns. When searching the difference between where you’re at and where you want to go, you can say “what’s the difference to there from here” and it recognizes what you wanted without needing to incredibly specific. Amazing.
I’d like to see Apple try and bring new features to the table, but I fear they’re already too late to match Google’s might.