HomePod Why are reviews calling HomePod Siri Dumb?

Discussion in 'HomeKit, HomePod, CarPlay, Home & Auto Technology' started by Farsider, Feb 20, 2018.

  1. Farsider macrumors 6502a

    Farsider

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Location:
    London, UK
    #1
    I mean, I get that Alexa and Google Assistant can do more.....I should hope so too, they've had a 3 year head start. But Siri is hardly dumb - with HomePod Siri I can:
    • Control every aspect of my Apple Music / iTunes Match or iTunes purchases with ease.
    • Control all my HomeKit stuff reliably.
    • Answers general knowledge questions
    • Language translation
    • Unit conversation and maths questions
    • Weather
    • News
    • Streams live radio (granted not every radio station is there yet).
    • When connected to Apple TV, I get voice controlled Play/Pause/Remind/Forward
    • Plays Podcasts.
    • Set timers and alarms (granted, 1 timer limitation).

    More here and here.

    It works reliably 99% of the time, can hear me through loud music and when quiet from very far away.

    I know Alexas and Googles can order Pizzas, buy stuff and hail an Uber but I question the popularity of such use cases. I want a menu for food I order, I want to see the stuff I buy and I only use Uber when I'm away from the home.

    HomePod Siri v1 is very good IMO. What am I missing on what the media see as dumb?
     
  2. Shanesan macrumors 6502

    Shanesan

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
  3. AdamA9 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    #3
    I think you have that the wrong way around unless I missed the sarcasm in your post. Siri has had a three-year headstart over its competition.

    From my records, they were released in this order:

    > Siri: October 2011
    > Alexa: November 2014
    > Google Assistant: May 2016
     
  4. MistrSynistr macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 15, 2014
    #4
    The OP isn't understanding Siri isn't new to HomePod. It's the same Siri in everything else, which was first.

    Siri should be light years ahead of Alexa and Google in terms of function.
     
  5. Farsider thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Farsider

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Location:
    London, UK
    #5
    No, right way round. I was referring to Smart Speakers release dates.
     
  6. za9ra22 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    #6
    From your first post, you appear to be referring specifically to Siri. And Siri is dumb in comparison to Amazon and Google's AI. Not just because those devices can order an Uber or buy stuff, but because those AIs are being updated all the time, can be expanded with third-party skills (I think that is true of Google's but it certainly is with Amazon's), and have much, much wider compatibility with home automation.

    From the release dates alone, Apple should have been light years ahead of Amazon and Google. Siri has been a heavily touted feature of iPhones since 2011 - by Apple.
     
  7. lparsons21 macrumors 6502

    lparsons21

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    Jun 3, 2014
    Location:
    Southern Illinois
    #7
    Amen Brother!! Siri should have been light years ahead, shame it isn't.
     
  8. Kurri macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    #8
    I have a question...when you say "hey siri" with your phone in the room, which one answers? the iphone or the homepod? If you want to setup a reminder or something, does the iphone know to answer since the homepod cant do that? Or does the homepod say I cant do that and your phone stays silent.
     
  9. Farsider thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Farsider

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Location:
    London, UK
    #9
    With iOS devices in earshot, they light up when you "Hey Siri" but quickly turn off again as the HomePod takes over.

    If you're using your iPhone (for example) and you "Hey Siri", your iPhone will take the request.
     
  10. CPTmom2wp macrumors 6502

    CPTmom2wp

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    Sep 10, 2014
    Location:
    Ohio
    #10
     
  11. The Game 161 macrumors P6

    The Game 161

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    People view standards that of alexa and google assistant thats the issue and in comparison it isn't anywhere near as smart

    It does basic tasks fine but anything else and it won't give you much.

    Even allowing homepod to make calls and check your daily calendar would be a good improvement and hopefullly they do in a future update
     
  12. CPTmom2wp macrumors 6502

    CPTmom2wp

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2014
    Location:
    Ohio
    #12
    I too have felt that the criticism of Siri is a bit over the top and that there is a lot of piling on with little justification. That said, as per your bullet points, I would add Making Lists; Setting Notifications;and Listening to Podcasts.

    Likewise, while I order tons of things from Amazon and am a charter Prime member (....the privileges I get with that are having my Prime fees raised on a regular basis :rolleyes:) , I do like to see my choices and compare prices when I'm ordering, e.g., ordered some nylabones for my pups this morning and I not only had to see what kind I wanted, but had to determine the size I wanted. It was far quicker to do it online than it would have been to try and use a voice assistant and a series of questions. Same with food.....I like to see choices and prices prior to ordering and it's easier to do it online. I sometimes wonder if there are real life people who just verbally order (whatever) or worse, put those obnoxious Amazon Dash buttons all over their homes and push them to reorder items without first checking quantity, size, current price, etc. But that's a discussion for another forum........:eek: I would not do either one, so using Alexa to order anything is not useful to me. Ditto Uber.
     
  13. lakerchick4life macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    #13
    went to the apple store recently and checked out the Homepod..I asked homepod "Hey Siri, find me a good chicken recipe" it said it could not answer that question..maybe I was expecting too much since Im used to my sisters alexa(Which broke last year) for recipes I think its connected to allrecipes.com
     
  14. Farsider, Feb 20, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2018

    Farsider thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Farsider

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Location:
    London, UK
    #14
    Personally I think its disingenuous to call Siri Dumb. Less capable yes, but not dumb. If Siri could just do Apple Music only and nothing else then that's dumb.

    Seems to be fashionable to hate on new Apple products these days. Look at the release of the Nintendo Switch last year. The media dumped all over it and its a huge hit with consumers. The naysayers in the media quickly changed their tune.
     
  15. donster28 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Great White North
    #15
    There are a few nuances in Siri that are better than that of Alexa and Google. For example, if I ask it to turn my bedroom lights off, Siri will promptly do it and answer back with a more human like expression, each one different form the other if asked multiple times. With Google, there is a delay and the vocal responses I always get are very similar to each other...and with a slight robotic tone to them.

    Being able to talk to Siri on the HomePod in a natural way, even if the tunes are pumping, is a welcome relief.

    I get it that Alexa and Google can do more (but still nothing compared to a full-fledged AI assistant of the future), but for me, HomeKit automation, music commands, weather and traffic info, general knowledge info are all I need in Siri. Any additions in the future will be bonus.
     
  16. Buerkletucson macrumors 6502

    Buerkletucson

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2015
    #16
    Siri on the Homepod does all I need it to do....very satisfied with the the whole package of the Homepod and it's amazing fidelity.
    My wife can pick up where Siri left off. :p
     
  17. AdamA9 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    #17
    Siri is seven years old in Apple's company. Siri is older than seven in total. However, it is dumb compared to the competition.

    It still sounds like it's just reading the headline paragraph from Wikipedia for every question and anything more taxing is faced with 'I'm sorry, I can't answer that'. In seven years I would have expected to be able to do more than ask for a song to play and set a single reminder.

    By Apple standards, Siri is poor. It's not about hating on Apple.
     
  18. CPTmom2wp macrumors 6502

    CPTmom2wp

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2014
    Location:
    Ohio
    #18
    While I don't have the expertise to compare AI platforms (you have my trust on that one :0)), I do think there are two schools of thought with regard to wider expansion of HomeKit and third party Skills. I have, and will continue to appreciate Apple's relatively more secure and private ecosystem, even if it does limit choices.

    Apple Music, at $9.99 per month and iTunes match at around $29 per year, provides all the options I need for listening to the music I love. I have an extensive collection of vinyl and CD's that has been uploaded to iTunes on my iMac, so there isn't anything that I cannot get music or podcast related, mostly accessible through Siri. Likewise, HomeKit has plenty of options through companies that will most likely still be in business in 5 years, also accessible through Siri. That's the quality aspect.

    I understand that developers want a broader platform since that is their career and interest. And there will always be people who want choices for verbal access and curation that are already available, e.g., Spotify, ordering from Amazon, ordering Pizza, ordering Uber from Echo or Google Home.
    But Siri is not considered "behind" for those of us who use it as part of a more secure/private Apple ecosystem in our homes, with less likelihood (no guarantees, obviously) that our information will be collected or sold. I also prefer the freedom to make my own choices, without having those choices "curated" through Google or Amazon's algorithms.

    Perhaps there is room for two different paths with neither one being better or worse, just different. Actually, I might even be OK with shopping at the Apple Store with Siri................;)
     
  19. Black Tiger macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    #19
    The HomePod is an accessory for Apple Music. I think anyone making comparisons to these other products misses the point that this is not what the HomePod set out to do. To me it seems like a portable, adaptable speaker that someone can move around their house, take to a friend’s party, pack up and take on holiday, etc., that has better sound than speakers of similar size and price. It’s a compact music listening system that adjusts to the listening environment. It is also not an audiophile system, but this is the trade off for compact size and a lower price point. Again, I don’t see a reason to buy one, but the smart speaker angle is not a valid criticism IMO.
     

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18 February 20, 2018