Why Google Assistant can’t beat Apple’s Siri for iPhone users

Google Assistant brings Google’s AI smarts to the iPhone, but Siri is still better for Apple users


Google Assistant on the iPhone does have one or two advantages over Siri, even for those in the Apple apps and services world. Photo: Bloomberg
Google Assistant on the iPhone does have one or two advantages over Siri, even for those in the Apple apps and services world. Photo: Bloomberg

San Francisco: Some people think Google’s virtual assistant beats Siri in reliability and capability. That may be true on Google’s own devices, like the Pixel smartphone, but the Assistant is hobbled on the iPhone.

During the keynote at the Google I/O conference this week, the internet giant unveiled a version of its Assistant as an app for the iPhone. It has a slick design, integrates the company’s ubiquitous search engine, and taps into Google services like Gmail and Google Calendar. The crowd of developers in the audience cheered: millions of new iPhone users to reach for innovative voice-based interactions. But the reality for iPhone users is that the Google Assistant will probably never beat Apple Inc.’s Siri on its home turf. That’s bad news for the Alphabet Inc. unit, which wants its voice-based technology everywhere. Here are some of the limitations:

Altogether, unless you are deeply in the Google ecosystem, using Google Assistant on the iPhone is a pain compared to Siri. Of course, over time, it is possible that Apple will open up more functionality to the Google Assistant. For now, however, Google Assistant on the iPhone does have one or two advantages over Siri, even for those in the Apple apps and services world. You can type into the Assistant. This is great for situations where you want to quickly get a task done without speaking out loud. And if you have a Google Home speaker, the Assistant on the iPhone integrates well with that device for controlling other connected home gadgets. Bloomberg

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