Since Apple debuted Siri for the iPhone, various third-party manufacturers had tried to replicate the experience on iOS rival handsets, including developing third-party apps for the Android OS. Now, it seems that Android’s major partners–LG, HTC, and Samsung–either have released a Siri challenger or are on their way to doing so, and it appears that even Google is getting more serious with a voice-based user experience with its Majel project.
Of the smartphone manufacturers, it seems that Samsung is the first out of the gate with S Voice, a competitive offering that offers a wide range of functionality for Android, including launching apps, searching the Internet, creating tasks and appointments, scheduling alarms, posting to social media networks, and looking up and navigating to local businesses. While the feature sets are wide-ranging, my personal experience with S Voice was mixed and the service seems a bit less accurate than Apple’s own Siri, which has been criticized for its mixed performance by users.
After the Galaxy S III went on sale in the U.S., South Korean handset rival LG debuted its own solution called Quick Voice. The feature is described to be more ‘conversational’ so you can talk the way you normally would to query Quick Voice for results. According to Wired, “LG is launching Quick Voice, its own built-in voice-commanded assistant app that will (like Siri and S Voice) tell you what the weather is like, remind you of upcoming calendar appointments, help you dictate and send text messages, and even pull up the YouTube video you’re looking for.”
More recently, as my colleague Shawn Ingram reported, HTC is also rumored to be working on a challenger in the voice interface. The company placed a teaser on its Facebook page.
And lastly, Google, which creates the Android OS, is working on a solution for Android. According to the Wall Street Journal last week, Google is accelerating the development of this custom solution for the platform. Google’s solution will be called Majel and the delay in launching Majel is so that Google can tweak it to make it feel more like Siri according to rumors. Hopefully, with development accelerated, Google may have something to demo at Google I/O later this week.