MENU

Does Apple have a Siri-ous problem?

If you’re to believe the ads, Apple‘s (Nasdaq: AAPL) Siri can help a teenager start a band and find a nearby restaurant serving linguica for John Malkovich.

However, the voice-activated digital assistant’s utility has come under fire from many of the users who actually own iPhone 4S smartphones, and the latest public smearing comes from The New York Times‘ Nick Bilton.

In a recent Bits column, Bilton takes Apple to task for Siri’s shortcomings.

“We have had some major communication issues,” he writes. “She frequently misunderstands what I’m saying. Sometimes she is just unavailable. Often, she responds with the same, repetitive statement.”

These are familiar problems. I’ve given up on Siri as anything more than a novelty. Between the outages and the misunderstandings, I’m down to just a few basic functions for Siri.

Things like email and text dictation sound great until it takes more time to correct the mistakes than to just peck the whole thing out one fat finger at a time. It’s true that Siri is in beta — and it will get better — but why is Apple spending so much money marketing a product that’s flawed?

Why market a product that a competitor may be about to improve?

Bilton says he’s been testing Google Voice Search, now available in Google‘s (Nasdaq: GOOG) latest Android update. He finds that it’s a more functional application. Who cares if it can’t tell a joke about two iPhones walking into a bar? At least Google Voice Search knows who Tim Cook is.

So where does Apple go from here? It’s been spending a lot of its marketing dollars on celebrity-studded ads pitching the casual merits of Siri, but it may be merely educating the marketplace on a platform that a rival — a cheaper and more popular rival at that — may be doing better.

The story doesn’t end here, of course. Siri will get better with every passing tweak. However, if Android and iOS devices have established voice-activated assistants, the competition will also need to listen and speak up.

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) has a history of spending big bucks to improve its chances in battles with Google and Apple. Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) lacks the same kind of resources, but who knows what it’s capable of on the voice-activated front if it’s the BlackBerry maker’s last hope of holding on to the corporate market.

Things are about to get interesting, Siri. I hope your skills improve in a crowded room.

If you’re in the market for some high yielding ASX shares, look no further than our “Secure Your Future with 3 Rock-Solid Dividend Stocks” report. In this free report, we’ve put together our best ideas for investors who are looking for solid companies with high dividends and good growth potential. Click here now to find out the names of our three favourite income ideas. But hurry – the report is free for only a limited time.

 More reading

The Motley Fools purpose is to help the world invest, better. Take Stock is The Motley Fool’s free investing newsletter. Packed with stock ideas and investing advice, it is essential reading for anyone looking to build and grow their wealth in the years ahead. Click here now to request your free subscription, whilst it’s still available. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

A version of this article, written by Rick Aristotle Munarriz, originally appeared on fool.com

The 5 mining stocks we’re recommending in 2019…

For decades, Australian mining companies have minted money for individual investors like you and me. But if you believe the pundits and talking heads on TV, those days are long gone. Finito! Behind us forever…

We say nothing could be further from the truth. To earn the really massive returns, you’ve got to fish where others aren’t fishing—and the mining sector could be primed for a resurgence. That’s why top Motley Fool analysts just revealed their exciting new research on 5 ASX miners they believe could help you profit in 2019 and beyond…

Including:

The best way we see to play the global zinc shortage… Our #1 favourite large-cap miner (hint: it’s not BHP)… one early-stage gold miner we think could hit the motherlode… Plus two more surprising companies you probably haven’t heard of yet!

For free access to our brand-new research, simply click here or the link below. But be warned, this research is available free for a limited time only, and we reserve the right to withdraw it at any time.

Click here for your FREE report!