Let’s Take This One With a Grain of Salt

Ina Fried, covering some conference in Asia on some website:

Andy Rubin thinks there is a lot of potential for phones to be more useful companions, but says he is not interested in turning Android devices into personal assistants.

“I don’t believe that your phone should be an assistant,” the Android chief said in an interview on Wednesday just after appearing on stage at AsiaD. “Your phone is a tool for communicating. You shouldn’t be communicating with the phone; you should be communicating with somebody on the other side of the phone.”

What do you expect him to say about Siri, though? “Well, Apple really pulled ahead of us there”? Not going to happen. The truth is, Google has been working on voice-driven stuff for mobile devices for years. The primary interface to their Google for iPhone app is voice. The ante has been raised, and the correct play is for Google to downplay Siri’s relevance until they feel they’re competitive. This is like Steve Jobs dismissing video-playing iPods, claiming that no one wants to watch movies or TV shows on a handheld display, one year before Apple shipped video-playing iPods.

Thursday, 20 October 2011