Siri - Crippled by Apple?


Don’t know if anyone else watches Luke Miani’s YouTube channel… I find him a bit pretentious sometimes (and that’s coming from me!), but have enjoyed some of his recent classic Mac vids… and he does offer some interesting commentary on the state of Apple at the moment.

In the above video, he makes the claims, which seem to be backed up with leaked info, that Apple is essentially holding Siri back from being a proper useful AI interface due to their reluctance to allow it to actually be a useful AI interface. In short - apparently most of anything Siri says is actually scripted by a team of writers, meaning Siri can’t actually “look something up and give you an answer” unless it’s something pre-determined. Thus for example (as in the video) if you ask for when high tide is, you’ll get some google results to look at, but Siri wont actually look the information up and tell you herself.

Another aspect mentioned in the video is Apple directing queries about its products only to its own website, which - Ok - I can understand… but doesn’t always actually get you the answer you were after, like say - honest reviews and alternative prices.

There’s all kinds of other stuff mentioned as well, not to mention just in my experience a general level of frustration at the interface’s accuracy and usefulness.

I hear often that Alexa etc are better options than Siri, and whilst I guffawed at the idea in the past, I can’t really argue now.

So as I am about to move into my house (finally - woot!) and was wondering buying a HomePod Mini for each bedroom, I am now instead starting to think about the alternatives…

Considering when Siri arrived the tech was pretty advanced and exciting, it seems pretty poor that Apple haven’t been able to make drastic improvements in the past decade, when you consider what its rivals are doing and advancements in AI…



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Apple has not developed Siri as much as Alexa and the Google Assistant have been developed. This is disappointing as the concept has so much potential. The same can be said for Apple Home. It still has minimal support from third party products.

We gave up on Siri on the HomePod for controlling our home, and use the Google Assistant on a couple of Nest Hubs. We have minimised our investment on home automation as it has not really reached maturity. We can control three lights and two air conditioners. We could also use it to control our Sony TV, watering system and a WiFi security camera used as a baby monitor, but the implementations in the Google world are very limited. Besides, we have not found a productive use case for Google control of these devices.

The Nest Hubs are good for what they do, but they are quite limited for us given we are otherwise an Apple family.

Our collection of Google Home compatible devices has arisen due to the current marketplace. If you want to buy an air conditioner for example, you pick the air conditioner that heats and cools the best. You then look at the home automation options for air conditioners and find only Google and Alexa are supported.

You could try to find an air conditioner that offers Apple Home support, but if you do find one and select it, you are letting the tail wag the dog. It may not even heat or cool well

Perhaps things will be better with the HomePod Mini, particularly once Matter and Thread are widely supported. However, I will not be holding my breath whilst I wait.

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I have a couple of Amazon devices and one google device and the ‘smart competitors’ are simply better than SIRI (and the difference isn’t even close).

Now that we own again, I really want to make it a “smart house” - funds permitting as always. We’ve got much higher priorities like restoring the roof, to then get solar panels… which I’m guessing will not give much change under $30k, though if there may be some rebates… But certainly at some point! :slight_smile:

So yeah - whilst I’d love to have gone with Homepods of some sort, I am really doubting that option now…

I am really just not seeing Apple in my future, which is still near impossible to imagine after 31 years of my life being an Apple fanboy.

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There are subsidies/rebates in Vic for Solar systems, batteries for solar, air conditioners (heat pumps) and for heat pump electric hot water


I have never used Siri much. I had an original HomePod but it hardly got used so I sold it about 18 months ago (got more than I paid for it) to help fund my M1 Mac mini. I can’t say that I miss it. I’m not really into the whole home automation thing. There is other stuff I’d much rather spend my money on.

Having said that, I subscribe to Luke Miani on YouTube. I think he’s quite entertaining. He doesn’t take himself too seriously most of the time. He does some interesting stuff. His videos are well made & not too long.

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I hardly ever talk to Siri, except occasionally to turn a light on or off, or to check that I have locked the door. I never ask her to find information for me when I can likely do it myself, faster. I don’t have Homepods, my appleTV serves well enough. I’m not into music in the way I was 40 years ago :slight_smile:

[Edit] Had not watched the video, but now that I have I am feeling even more inclined to switch to Alexa.

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Siri, how long to drive to Myer, Geelong?

Sorry, I can’t tell how long it will take to get to that location
(Whilst showing it is 7km away)

Siri, how long to get to Westfields Geelong?

Sorry, I can’t tell how long it will take to get to that location
(Whilst showing it is 7km away)

If I say the street address, Siri can tell me… but wont tell me otherwise, despite showing me the place I am asking about.

I can ask for how long to get to Bunnings, Waurn Ponds… That works.

What the hell, Apple?


Maybe it’s a long way off but I always thought Siri/Alexa/AI whatever you call it would evolve into being a personal assistant, much like in the movie Her (and sure, it wouldn’t hurt if it had Scarlett Johansson’s voice). It could keep track of my work and personal calendars, my upcoming bills, monitor my health, etc etc and actually talk to me intelligently, get to know me and assist me on a daily basis, kind of like a parent/partner/friend/therapist. I know I’m asking a lot.

It does not seem that Apple have developed Siri that much since the iPhone 4S (2011). The new Apple Watch Series 9 has a small improvement with “Faster on-device Siri”:

For the first time on Apple Watch, Siri requests can be processed on device. For requests that do not require information from the internet, such as starting a workout or setting a timer, Siri does not rely on Wi-Fi or cellular networks, resulting in quicker and more reliable responses.