A few days ago, the Android Market offered an app called the
"Official" SIRI for Android. It wasn't. And because Google stays on
top of monitoring their open market, they were able to remove it
from the Market in very short order. Kudos to Google. I'd still much
rather have an open market which sometimes needs to be tweaked than
But, this review is not of the app which was removed from the
Market, but of an app that was created by a group of developers in
only eight hours a few months back, cleverly(?) called IRIS (SIRI
First, let me say that the fact that the developers created this
interactive voice personal assistant app to compete with the
iPhone's SIRI in a mere eight hours (or so the instant-legend
claims), is an incredible accomplishment. Ultimately though, for me
it was only a fun novelty for a short while before I decided that as
far as personal assistant apps go for the Android, I much prefer
It sounded intriguing to have an app for Android that would verbally
respond to your requests, so i downloaded and loaded the free IRIS
app (there are a number of other SIRI clones as well). After I was
done asking the usual array of stupid questions like, "Are you a man
or woman?"; "Are you married?"; "Are you better than Siri?"; I moved
on to informational things such as, "What will the weather be like
tomorrow?"; "How far is it to the Moon?"; "Where is Matagascar?" She
(I confirmed that) did okay. Just okay.
For instance, I asked IRIS, "How many U.S. dollars are there in a
British pound?" The reply, although accurate, was far more confusing
than the question. IRIS returned the calculation for a number that
she just pulled out of her cyber-butt and returned with a reply
which told me how many GBP you would have if you had 7,200,000 U.S.
dollars. Often, I found that you had to continually rephrase
questions until you finally got the answer you were looking for.
Then, I moved on to trying more productive things like asking IRIS
to open apps and text people for me. She couldn't do either.
One of the features of
that I love and use often is for texting. You can open
Vlingo and speak: "Text Joe I'm on my way period do you want me to
bring anything question mark" and it gets it right 95% of the time.
Another useful feature of Vlingo which comes in quite handy is when
you want to open an app that you don't use all that often, and you
don't want to scroll through all of your apps to find it, you simply
say, "Open stopwatch" and Voila! it opens right up.
As a novelty, IRIS is rather fun, but not nearly as useful a tool as
I had hoped. I won't uninstall though, because when those smug,
iPhone users are showing off SIRI, I can at least open IRIS and ask
a loaded question that I know the bitch has the right anser to. :)