Voice assistants or virtual assistants have become indispensable. Voice assistants are software agents that can interpret human speech and respond via synthesized voices. They provide assistance to make our lives easier.
Apple has Siri, Amazon has Alexa, Microsoft has Cortana and Google has their very own Google Assistant. But the problem remains, which one is better? While all these ladies provide great services in their own strengths, having a comprehensive idea about exactly where their strengths lie may give you a better insight with your next hardware purchase.
Here’s some tech trivia on their origins along with their pros and cons to help you choose which voice assistant best suits you in terms of basic search, voice accuracy and speed, compatibility, AI capabilities, and diversity with picking up languages and accents.
SIRI – “Hey Siri!”
After Stanford Research Institute made Siri as an app in 2010, Apple immediately bought it and integrated it into iPhone 4S as a new feature in 2011, and it has been an iconic voice ever since. Best for longstanding Apple users, with a greater support on the ecosystem, Siri scores high in language support, HomeKit compatibility, Apple integration while limited voice applications and device versatility appear to be cons.
ALEXA – “Alexa!”
Alexa was launched in 2014 along with the Amazon Echo speaker and can perform web searches, order products from Amazon, and act as a hub for compatible devices all via voice commands. While Alexa’s intelligence, smart home support and easy shopping is remarkable, inaccurate answers and the mobile experience can be noted as downfalls. Since Amazon is quickly overtaking the tech market, Alexa appears to be promising for value growth and expanding improvements.
CORTANA – “Hey Cortana!”
Microsoft developed Cortana and the initial release was in 2014. It is used on the Windows OS. Cortana uses Bing search engine and data on the user’s phone/computer to make personalized responses. Extremely useful in Windows laptops and a lesser known fact is that it’s Xbox compatible, Cortana still lacks in ecosystem integration. Microsoft is utilizing it for many advanced machine learning and AI projects, so if you are into AI mostly, Cortana’s developments may interest you.
GOOGLE ASSISTANT – “OK, Google!”
Created by Google in 2016, the Assistant was designed to be a conversational and two-way experience. It is widely used across all sorts of devices: computers, phones, watches, and smart speakers. A clear frontrunner in all areas, it is the seamless blend of usability, AI, diversity, and compatibility. It is perfect for many devices and phones, and is probably the perfect smart speaker assistant for your home. Although Assistant is advancing quickly while learning a lot about you, it may create some data privacy concerns as well.
Current market trends suggest that voice assistant technology will continue to gain popularity and adoption. While we wait for the changes and improvements to appear, the future for voice assistants is looking bright and promising.