October 11, 2011

Siri’s Speech Recognition, Crazy Good

Per David Pogue, iPhone 4S Siri’s Speech recognition. Crazy good, transformative, category-redefining speech recognition.
Hope he is right.

And, hopefully it does not work like this voice recognition elevator. Speech recognition has been an imperfect technology forever. It breaks in real use.

If Siri’s speech recognition works for 90% of the people 90% of the time, it will be a big leap forward and can indeed be transformative.

Apple still needs to fix Siri’s awful automated voice if it wants Siri to become part of the daily use. Like a poor UI, a poor Voice will turn off users from the product. 
Apple says Siri will improve with time — both because she adapts to you, and because Apple itself will periodically upgrade her brain.
Siri does need to improve significantly for mainstream usage otherwise once its novelty is worn off, most users will keep it turned off. The current tasks done by Siri – making appointments, set alarm etc - are very rudimentary and will not make for lasting usage and even those tasks can be done faster by typing.

Siri is a promising technology but seems overhyped for now.