Everything You Need To Know About AI Assistants, From Siri To Ozlo

An army of nonhuman helpers are here—or on their way—to make life easier. Here’s how they compare.

In the latest attempt to fulfill sci-fi movie fantasies, tech firms have been lining up to provide you with a virtual assistant. From well-known voice-powered AIs such as Apple’s Siri to upstarts like Viv, the goal is to quicken the actions you already take on your phone and other devices, growing ever-more efficient at the job by learning from your behavior.

But like any hired help, each of these AI assistants has different skills, blind spots, and quirks. Here's a rundown of the contenders, including some intriguing newcomers.

Apple Siri

Bio: A voice-driven assistant that talks back to you—invoked by long-pressing the iPhone or iPad home button—and proactively recommends actions to take. Recently took up residence on Apple TV and Apple Watch.

Notable skills: Easy to access on Apple devices. Understands natural human language. Knowledgeable about news, weather, sports, movies, directions, and local businesses. Well-versed in what to watch on TV. Knows how to control some smart home appliances.

Character flaws: Doesn’t know how to communicate with most other apps and services. Not always as fast as some assistants.

Level of humanity: Can’t hold an extended conversation, but cracks wise when given the chance. Female voice doesn’t sound overly robotic.

Outlook: Siri paved the way for modern speech-based assistants, but hasn’t gotten significantly smarter over the past few years. The lack of an open API means you can’t open a song in Spotify, add a task to Wunderlist, or post a message in Slack, even as tie-ins with other apps become table stakes among other virtual assistants. Apple must figure out these types of integrations for Siri to stay relevant; maybe we'll hear news about them at next month's WWDC keynote.

Google Voice Search/Google Now

Bio: Voice assistant powered by the world’s largest search engine. Also digs through your email and search history to help you out. Lives on Android devices, iOS, and Chrome.

READ THE REST @ https://www.fastcompany.com/3059719/handicapping-the-ai-assistants-from-siri-to-ozlo

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