We’ve all seen them, those pricey ads Apple is using to promote Siri and featuring actors Zoosey Deschanel, Samuel L. Jackson, and John Malkovich. Now, there’s word those ads might not be as realistic as one would expect. In fact, things have gotten so bad for the often criticized voice assistant that one former Apple employee says that Steve Jobs would have been “embarrassed by Siri,” according to AppleInsider.
First launched in April, Apple’s four ads highlight the iPhone 4S’s much-discussed feature. In the ads, each actor explains just how essential Siri is to their lives.
According to Paul Kafasis, the ads aren’t accurate. The One Foot Tsunami writer calls Siri “over-promise(d) and under-deliver(ed).” To prove his point, he repeated to Siri some of the words Jackson used in his ad. In this case, he asked the assistant to remind him to “put the gazpacho on ice in an hour.”
Instead of scheduling a reminder, Siri didn’t understand the request. Whereas Kafasis said “gazpacho,” Siri heard “just bacchio,” “this bogil,” or “this poncho.”
Stranger still is what happened when Kafasis placed his iPhone next to his computer and played the actual Jackson ad for Siri to hear.
In this case, instead of setting a reminder, Siri suggested Kafasis call three individuals in his iPhone’s contact list. The names of the folks Siri suggested he call include: Mirium Booksbaum, Anna-Genelle Harev, and Ron Ridenhour. On what planet do those names sound anything close to gazpacho?
One would think Apple would know better and at least use the ads to show an accurate interpretation of what Siri actually does. After all, users and bloggers alike have been highly critical of Siri over its lack of performance and functionality. If fact, it has gotten so bad, a class action lawsuit is now in full-force by users that claim the service is highly suspect at best.
Steve Jobs would have “lost his mind” over Siri
With many crying foul, it shouldn’t come as a surprise what one former Apple employee said about Siri.
According to Fortune writer Adam Lashinsky, the “former insider” said that, “People are embarrassed by Siri. Steve (Jobs) would have lost his mind over Siri.”
I certainly agree. As suggested in May, I feel that the time has come for Apple to muzzle Siri, make it better, or put it out of its misery. Hopefully, Apple will announce a Siri upgrade at next month’s Worldwide Developers Conference. If not, Siri could soon join Lisa and the Newton as rare Apple products that just didn’t click with consumers.
Are you still using Siri on your iPhone 4S? What steps should Apple take to improve the Siri brand?