While there were many interesting takeaways from the I/O 2017 Google Developersâ€™ conference this week, one which might have raised a bit of curiosity would be the introduction of the AI-based Google Assistant on the iOS platform.
Google Assistant can be downloaded on iPhones and used as an additional digital assistant to the homegrown Apple product Siri. So how do these two technologies match up and which one wins?
Written commands a major difference
The first visible difference one can notice with the Google Assistant on the iPhones is that you can send it commands in the form of texts and it would immediately fetch it for you. Many people may not prefer to be seen or heard talking to their phone, particularly in public places like inside a bus or a movie theater. With Google Assistant, you just send a text.
Much wider research response than Siri
Another interesting advantage Google Assistant appears to have is that its AI appears a bit more intelligent than Siri. As an example, to clarify this, the analyst puts in a query either through voice or through text to Google Assistant the response is not just limited to the precise question but a little more. If you were to put the question, â€śwho is the hero of the film Bahubali 2?â€ť Google Assistant will bring up a picture of Prabhas. It may even through up a link which if tap can take you to more information about Prabhas and so on. The user might feel it is not a mechanical Bot he or she is dealing with, but a live friendly character.
Almost similar is another example that will convince you why Google Assistant scores over Siri. If you asked for a flight status for instance; the response you might receive from Siri might be a page with the link to the page that has the flight information. Google Assistant, on the other hand, directly provides the status on the screen. If your query is not very particular, like including the flight number, but generic, like â€śget me the status of the Bengaluru â€“ Delhi flightâ€ť Google Assistant will not only take you to the relevant interactive page, but when the page opens, the boxes for departure and destination stations are already filled in! Wouldnâ€™t you like that?
Shopping list and added help
In the case of the shopping list also, Google Assistant appears to score slightly better as it not only throws up just the list but goes on to take you to its Google Express store where you can end up making the purchases.
Counter points for a Siri lover
While all these and a few more are advanced as the features that give an edge to Google Assistant over Siri, your diehard Apple fan may have none of it. According to them the very first difficulty Google Assistant poses on an iPhone is that you need to first get into the app first to star using it. Thereâ€™s no direct button or method as one can do to reach Siri. The other drawbacks pointed out by them include the inability to access many non-Google based apps on the phone, including services like hailing an Uber cab or such other conveniences one enjoys with Siri.
But this is a great beginning where a great technology company which prides itself on its in-house prowess in everything it touches has permitted one of its major rivals to place its app on its phones. The customer is the ultimate beneficiary and can enjoy the best of both worlds.
Image: Aaron Yoo