Documenting the Coming Singularity

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Is Majel the Siri Killer? Android v. iOS Battle Rages!

Android and Me - December 14, 2011 by Taylor Wimberly

A couple days ago we posted about Majel, and now some more tips are starting to come in. We compared Majel to Apple’s Siri voice assistant because that’s how it was described to us, but the project could be much larger than we initially imagined. Read on for new details and some interesting quotes from Google employees.

First we had a tip from “Ted,” who described his experience with an early release of Majel on an Android tablet. Even though this tip was sent from an anonymous IP, we believe it to be accurate since it matched an earlier description we received.

Ted wrote: “It’s definitely as good, or better, than Siri. At least on the tablet you can sort through different answers with these swipe-able trays. Like, if you say “show me the Statue of Liberty” it’ll automatically take you to Google Image results, but another tray beneath it might be its location on Google Maps and then another tray might have a Wikipedia page. It’s also pretty good at giving you succinct answers if you ask it a question. The UI is definitely more powerful than Siri’s, even if a little harder to navigate.

At least at one phase of the development you would activate it by saying “Computer…” It was hard not to use a Jean Luc Piccard accent when doing it!”

As you can see, the first release of Majel might be rather simple and focus solely on natural language questions with answers from Google Search.

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