Siri’s reliance on Google cut in half since iOS 6

By Ed Sutherland on Dec 20, 2012

Siri, what happened to Google? The voice-activated personal assistant (which debuted alongside the iPhone 4S last October) and the Internet giant aren’t as close as before. Apple’s digital secretary is fast becoming a stranger to Google as one Apple watcher says Siri’s reliance on Google has been cut in half since iOS 6.

While 60 percent of Siri queries sent iPhone owners using iOS 5 to Google data, iOS 6 reduced the percentage to 30 percent. Apparently, Google Maps took the heaviest hit as Apple Maps became the destination for 24 percent of Siri’s answers, up from zero percent in iOS 5. Siri – now competing with Google’s own voice assistant – is also a wee bit more accurate… Read More


Watch this guy open his garage door with Siri

By Jeff Benjamin on Dec 17, 2012

It’s been a while since we’ve seen any cool Siri Proxy videos. At one time they were all the rage, with people starting cars, adjusting thermostats, and more, all via Apple’s virtual assistant.

Now that the newness of Siri has worn off, Siri hacks and proxy usage has kind of died down. That is, until now. With the help of a friend — the credit card sized Rasberry Pi computer — this guy is able to open up his garage using only his voice. Read More


How to get directions in Google Maps via Siri, no jailbreak required

By Cody Lee on Dec 17, 2012

After months of rumors and speculation, Google finally launched its standalone Maps app for iOS last week. And it’s been pretty popular thus far. It’s currently the top free app in the App Store, and it’s also listed first in Apple’s featured ‘Maps’ section.

The app does have some caveats though. Perhaps most notably, unlike the built-in Maps app, you can’t get directions in Google Maps via Siri. Luckily, a workaround popped up over the weekend that takes care of that. And it doesn’t require a jailbreakRead More


How Bluetooth can make Apple TV more than a ‘hobby’ device

By Ed Sutherland on Dec 11, 2012

News that the Apple TV software will support Bluetooth could make the streaming device largely viewed as a “hobby” into something more. Much more. More than simply replacing the Apple remote with a keyboard, the new software potentially does for video what the iPhone did for grainy phone snaps.

While speculation is rampant (and likely quiet wrong) about when Cupertino will enter the television business, the Apple TV box is a gold mine just gathering dust, here’s why… Read More


Apple ‘more in tune’ with TVs than set-top box biz

By Ed Sutherland on Dec 7, 2012

Wall Street investors are among those intensely interested in Apple CEO Tim Cook’s remark that the iPad maker has “intense interest” in doing something about television. One observer believes Apple wants its logo on the king of the hill, top of the heap when it comes to consumer electronics: the television set. The company has never been one to work around the edges of an industry.

That’s why a Wells Fargo Securities analyst expects Apple to forgo a predicted set-top box and instead go for a full-blown Apple TV, calling it the “centerpiece of the living room”Read More


Apple products trend on 2012′s most popular baby names list

By Cody Lee on Dec 1, 2012

Did you know that in 2012, it’s become completely acceptable to name your newborn after an Apple product? In fact, it’s not only acceptable, it’s become quite trendy.

BabyCenter just published their list of this year’s most popular baby names. And while choices like Siri and Apple didn’t make the top 100, they did shoot up the charts… Read More


Apple granted 36 patents covering Siri mic icon design, Lightning, widgets and more

By Ed Sutherland on Nov 27, 2012

Apple this morning has received patents covering more than three dozen different technologies, ranging from the obvious to the obscure. The company’s patent filings as of late are even inspiring parody treatments like the Apple alphabet patent. Among today’s grants are the filings describing ways to interface sports equipment with your iPhone, iPad or iPod, patents for Mac OS X dashboards and the MacBook keyboard and others seeking to protect icons and designs of popular software features.

Most people know of Apple’s long-time association with Nike and the Nike+ app that records your running routine. Earlier this year, the Cupertino, California company filed a patent to go one step farther, interfacing your iPhone with a treadmill, or other workout machine at the local gym. Now it appears that patent was granted. But, wait, there’s plenty more gadgets and gizmos Apple wants protected… Read More


GM announces first vehicles with Siri ‘Eyes Free’ integration

By Cody Lee on Nov 27, 2012

We’ve known for a while now that General Motors was going to be one of the first auto-makers to market with the new Siri ‘Eyes Free’ feature, and today, they made it official.

The company issued a press release this morning, announcing that it would be integrating Eyes Free into its next Chevy Spark and Sonic Drive vehicles, available early next year… Read More


Conceptual renders imagine iTV interface

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 26, 2012

A member of The Verge forums posted a series of intriguing images depicting an à la carte heaven where the Apple TV box serves entertainment from pretty much any source imaginable, be it DLNA devices on the local network, your cable or satellite provider web sources like iTunes and YouTube – even premium channels like HBO and Fox. Regardless of the source, the concept calls for a unified interface bringing together all the different media sources in one central place, with voice-activated search, electronic program guides and other perks… Read More


5 excellent jailbreak tweaks to improve search on iOS

By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 22, 2012

Searching is something we do day in and day out. It’s an integral part of the desktop experience, so it only makes sense that it’s something we do often on mobile devices as well.

Searching on the iPhone, while adequate, has always left a little something to be desired when compared to competing operating systems like Android. It only makes sense, considering Android is the product of Google — the creator of the world’s best and most popular search engine.

If you’re jailbroken, however, you have many more choices when it comes to search on iOS. There are search improvements for Spotlight, voice search enhancements, Notification Center search options, and much, much, more. Jailbreaking is a great way to get more out of your device, and that’s why we’ve taken the liberty to compile a list highlighting some of the best jailbreak tweaks for search… Read More


Apple job listing indicates Siri in Arabic, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 20, 2012

For better or worse, Siri, Apple’s digital secretary, hasn’t been in the news lately. But that doesn’t mean Apple’s given up on her. According to a recently discovered and pretty interesting job listing on the Jobs at Apple web site, Apple is seeking a bunch of Cloud Services Interns who are fluent in several languages, indicating the company is actively working on Arabic, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish versions of Siri. The iPhone maker could also be looking to additionally enable new dialects of Chinese, French and Korean… Read More


Rumor: Apple Maps and Siri coming to the Mac with OS X 10.9 next year

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 19, 2012

OS X 10.9, the next major revision to Apple’s desktop operating system, will contain Siri and Apple Maps, the two headline capabilities currently exclusively available on newer iPhones, iPads and iPod touches. According to a new report this morning, early builds of OS X 10.9 that were previously spotted in web logs include Siri and Maps integration. Both features are purportedly in the early testing stages so it has yet to be determined if they will be ready for prime time when OS X 10.9 ships some time next year… Read More


Meet iSiri, the best iWatch concept to date

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 8, 2012

The radical iSiri gadget idea by designer Federico Ciccarese may be the ultimate iWatch concept conceived to date. Falling somewhere in between this eerie-looking Matrix-ified gadget and another conceptual time piece with a FaceTime camera on it, iSiri seems so obvious and inevitable. If only Apple didn’t replace the rectangular iPod nano with a tall one… Read More


Ryan Petrich releases his own Siri inspired Google voice search tweak

By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 8, 2012

Hot on the heels of another jailbreak tweak that allows you to search the new Google Search app using only your voice, comes Activoice — a similar tweak from Ryan Petrich.

Like the NowNow tweak that we covered yesterday, Activoice allows you to easily invoke the new voice portion of the Google Search app similar to the way that you using Activator. Take a look inside for our hands on video coverage of the tweak in action. Read More


New jailbreak tweak supplants Siri with Google Search

By Cody Lee on Nov 7, 2012

Well that didn’t take long. Just a week after Google’s revamped Search app with new voice technology made it into the App Store, a jailbreak tweak has been released that will allow users to supplant it for Siri in iOS.

The voice recognition tech in the new Google Search app has received a lot of praise for its speedy response times and accurate results. And now, thanks to the new tweak NowNow, you can access it from anywhere… Read More


Showdown: Google Voice Search v. Siri speed test

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 5, 2012

Google’s recently updated Voice Search iOS app is simply amazing as it demonstrates just how speedy Siri should be. Unfortunately, Apple’s digital secretary remains reliant on network connectivity for voice recognition. Heck, this time last year some folks were even convinced only the iPhone 4S was fast enough to run Siri. That couldn’t be farther from the truth because Google’s iOS app comes with real-time voice recognition. So, how speedy is Siri compared to Google’s refreshed app? Check out this clip by Gizmodo and meet us down in the comments. It’s a couple days old but definitely worth watching… Read More


Siri to gain movie ticket purchasing in iOS 6.1

By Cody Lee on Nov 5, 2012

Apple seeded the first beta of iOS 6.1 to developers last week. The firmware should be the next update we see for iOS, and we’re expecting it to include at least a handful of new features.

In fact, we’ve already found a couple of new additions in the beta, including changes in the Maps app and new Lock screen music controls. And another discovery was made last night… Read More


Why Eddy Cue is the right guy to fix Maps and Siri

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2012

Senior Vice President Eddy Cue is known as the fixer at Apple, a reputation he built back in 2008, when Steve Jobs appointed him head of iTunes and online services after giving Apple’s cloud team a serious dressing down over the MobileMe(ss) debacle. This 23-year Apple veteran immediately retired the flaky service, built iCloud from the ground up and took control of Apple’s iTunes and App Store infrastructure.

Last September, CEO Cook appointed Cue Apple’s new SVP of of Internet Software and Services, the role that encompasses the iTunes Store, App Store, iBookstore, as well as the iAd advertising platform and iCloud services.

Monday, Cue assumed Maps and Siri responsibilities after Cook fired iOS chief Scott Forstall for shipping buggy software prematurely, clashing with his peers and refusing to apologize personally for Mapgate (it was Cook who eventually signed the public apology instead). We, of course, already knew all of the above. Today, CNET runs an interesting profile which reveals a couple previously unknown tidbits about this able exec… Read More


Shake ups and shufflings: some thoughts on the new Apple

By Sébastien Page on Oct 30, 2012

If there’s one thing that really came as a surprise this month, it’s certainly not the iPad mini, or any other product announcement, but the executives shake up and shuffling at Apple. SVP of Retail John Browett is gone, and that’s a good thing, and really, hardly a surprise. The biggest surprise was that he was hired in the first place. The real bombshell in yesterday’s abrupt announcement is the departure of SVP of iOS Software, Scott Forstall.

Although it was the biggest kick, Apple’s press release also told us that Ive would now be in charge of Human Interface (aka everything design), iOS and OS X groups are now one, Maps and Siri are now part of the Internet Services unit, and Mansfield will lead the new Technologies group.

Now that we’ve gathered a little more information about the news and that I’ve had time to really soak it in, I’d like to share my thoughts on the situation, and what it all means for the new Apple… Read More


Siri, where’s the nearest Wi-Fi hotspot?

By Cody Lee on Oct 25, 2012

Have you ever found yourself looking for a public Wi-Fi hotspot? Maybe you were nearing your monthly wireless data cap, or were on a laptop or some other non-cellular device.

How’d you go about finding it? Sure there are websites you can look at, and apps that you can download. But if you’re looking for an easier way to do this, you can just ask Siri… Read More

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