Siri - how’s that going for you?


So I had given up on Siri a longboard while ago. She lived mostly on an iPad 3 on my fridge and pretty much only set timers, something that mostly worked (frustratingly). Strangely the new fridge made things worse despite the iPad living in the same magnetic dock in the same place on the fridge?! Strange.

Siri was replaced by a google home mini which works a far greater percentage of the time (still not perfect) but does a whole lot more. Even the kids have taken to asking google random things with surprisingly good results.

So last night I was cooking something for dessert while watching a movie so chose to use Siri on my watch rather than google (so it would quietly let me know on my wrist which I was more likely to notice). To my surprise as I asked it to set a timer my watch, my iPhone and the old iPad mini (which lives in the lounge room) all replied confirming the request! On the upside the phone and watched managed to talk to each other (or I assume so) since only the watch went off but so did the iPad.

So has Siri gotten better? Or was this just blind luck (and a reminder to disable Siri on the iPad)?


For us it helped that we had moved to google music anyway since for the same money as Apple
Music you got YouTube Red + Google music.


Have never used Siri, do not expect to ever use Siri. Do not use any other voice assistants. Generally find them creepy and Do Not Want.


I rarely use Siri. I use Alexa quite a bit - I have Echo and Sonos One devices throughout the house. My home automation/control setup is connected to both Alexa and Siri, I find Alexa more reliable in terms of understanding me but the rate of false positive triggers from TV etc is a touch too high for my liking.


I only use Siri for setting alarms and timers, or for turning my lights on and off.


I use Google home for timers, adding stuff to the shopping list (you can set it up to add stuff to the ios reminders/shopping list via IFTTT). Turning lights and the coffee machine on and off. But biggest use is playing music or podcasts. We have four google homes (3 mini’s and one big one) and a Google Chromecast Audio, and have them set up as a group so you can say “Hey Google Play 1989 By Taylor Swift on Home Group” (or whatever it is) and off it goes.

And yes it does answer random general knowledge type questions. My main critique is having to say “hey google” or “okay google” I wish you could change it, as a Trek nerd I would change it to “Computer”. I know you can do that with Alexa but I tried an Alexa and it’s not a patch on Google Home. And yes, Siri is next to useless.

I have Google Music which is now YouTube Music, and yes YouTube Red is worth it’s weight in gold for blocking the ads on YouTube, though if you use Spotify you can set up Google home to control your spotify account instead.


I find it intermittent. Sometimes I am impressed Siri could do something, usually find directions when asked. However, next day I can ask for the exact same directions in the same vehicle and she cannot understand me no matter how hard I try.
And as for asking Siri information, I am sick of getting a list of web pages.

That said, I reckon she has improved in the last six months or so. But not enough to consider her, or trust she will be, reliable.


I’ve basically decided that the only reason that Siri needs to send the recording of “what you said” back to Apple, is so that their servers can work out the most ridiculous way to not answer your request,

We have a Google Home and a Home mini and I’m very impressed with how well it works. Yes, not perfect, but streets ahead of Apple’s effort.


I’d love to get more into home automation, but honestly I need smart light switches (not bulbs) which would allow control via voice + the dumb old switch. I know it’s possible, but AFAIK it’s only for large wall plates (rather than the little ones on the door frame) and they are relatively expensive still… one day… one day.


My 10 year old now admonishes me when I attempt to use Siri in front of him.

Oh dad, why are you bothering with Siri - you know she’ll get it wrong!

This morning I asked her for directions to a business that’s about 10 min drive away… she kept wanting to send me somewhere that’s an hour and a half away… even when I included the suburb.

Countdown 10 minutes, and such is all that Siri reliably does for me.


I use Siri for setting alarms. I tried using it for GPS navigation for a while and then I got frustrated and started using Google Maps again. To be honest, I wish I could replace Siri with the Google assistant. It’s far more accurate. I can get access at it in Chrome, and with Maps… but its one of those things.

I much prefer iOS in terms of UI but Google has the far superior assistant.


I would also like to use connected switches instead of bulbs - alas I am in the same boat with having a house fitted out with architrave switches throughout.
Additionally, most connected switches require a neutral wire which generally isn’t run to the switch in Australia- so I’d have to get a sparky in to rewire all the switches to wall plates, plus I’d have to replace the Tas oak architrave.


I stumbled over these while looking at things yesterday:

This Nero system appears to be installed behind the existing switch and appears to support both toggle and momentary switches . They should even be able to be installed in the roof with minimal rewiring by your sparky making architrave switches far less of an issue.

I haven’t seen much in the way of pricing other than a whole system installed (with only 6 switches, controller hub and a couple of Google Home units) for about $2.5k. Far more than I have right now, but it’s nice to see smarter and better systems coming.


Somewhat tangentially, as a feminist it bugs me when people say things like “Oh dad, why are you bothering with Siri - you know she’ll get it wrong!” (emphasis added by me). I think this contributes to overall negativity towards women. :smirk:

I think there’s a real problem with having a female voice for Siri - it’s a computer not a person. Siri is a computer, so “it’ll” get it wrong in my book, not “she’ll”.

As a 35+ y.o. white male one of the best things I’ve done is change Siri to a male voice, which removes the opportunity for inadvertent sexism from having an incompetent robot present as female.


But I don’t want to listen to a male voice. I like Siri’s voice. It’s just about the best thing about her.

Besides, I am with Raj on this one:


I’ve used Siri a couple of times, just to test the waters so to speak. Not something I’m really that keen on. If it saved a lot of time and I had a need to save time, it might be OK, but for me, its overkill.


I’m using Siri more and more. As of today I also use Siri to Airplay2 to my Sonos.


I recently took the plunge and purchased a Google Home Mini for the living room after my wife gifted one to my dad. I was pretty anti-google and persisted with struggling through life with Siri, after using dad’s GH - I am convinced that it is probably the best voice assistant out there on the market. Although it still has some gripes - especially with home automation things - it still outperforms Siri at every corner.


I have to say I’m very impressed by Siri on HomePod. I know that’s controversial.

It’s very sensitive. I can be a full room away and ask it in a normal voice and it’ll respond no problem.

Setting a timer, playing a news bulletin, playing a specific album, playing something it thinks I’ll like, setting volume, adding to my library, liking or disliking… it’s been perfect for my use case.

I absolutely love it. I’ve already switched to Apple Music to keep using it (I’m using Soundiiz so I can keep getting Spotify’s weekly playlists synced straight to Apple Music).


She’s stopped responding on my watch. No idea why. Contemplating amazon echo instead.