From: Plus Public Activity Feed for Joseph Tame
January 05, 2012 at 08:36PM

When I got my iPhone 4S a couple of months ago I was excited at the prospect of talking to it, of having it truly understand what I was saying, Of having it respond to my every vocalised wish.

But I was also curious if a couple of months down the line I'd still be talking to it, or whether it would just be an initial fad that would soon turn out to be impractical, that had no place in my daily life.

Well, here I am two months later still talking, and with the iPhone still listening.

But how am I actually using this functionality?

Being based in Japan, of course i'm already limited by the fact that I can't use location or business data in my Siri searches. So, when it comes to Siri itself, I actually only use it for setting my alarm clock at nighttime, checking the weather forecast, occasionally looking up odd bits of information or checking the latest exchange rates on Wolfram.

The problem I find is that when I'm in a situation that is most likely to benefit from Siri's assistance, (i.e. when I don't have my MacBook with me) I'm usually in a social situation, and sadly people seem to think I'm showing off if i use Siri – as opposed to just using the best tool I have to hand to retrieve the required information in the fastest possible time. For that reason, I don't use Siri much socially.

Of course you don't have to use Siri to take advantage of voice recognition on the iPhone, as it works in all applications wherever text input possible. Text messages, emails, twitter updates, and Google+ posts; all of these can now be dictated. I use this functionality all the time. I find that when it comes to SMS, it feels far more natural to speak my replies than to tap them out the keyboard. My wife can always tell when I'm using dictation as my messages tend to be much longer than they used to be.

The short walk home from the railway station has become a great opportunity to catch up on private emails, and I find I can get through them much quicker if I'm just speaking my replies. I get home feeling satisfied by all the work I've done just in that short space of time.

The accuracy isn't bad either, and I may be wrong, but it seems that it's getting more accurate the more I use it (I know it's supposed to do this, but I was sceptical whether that really was the case or not when I first started using it.)

Anyhow, now I am finally home I better put the iPhone down and get on with the washing up. Siri doesn't seem to like running water, and nor does her host!


05/01/2012 – 1