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back to article Apple: No Siri for old iPhone owners. Well, not from us

Siri will not be rolled out to the owners of older iPhone models a blogger has claimed. The wonders and joys of the talkie virtual assistant software will only be available to those who shell out £499 for the newest model of the iPhone according to emails received from Apple engineers and posted on the blog of Michael Steeber. …

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JDX
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I'm not a fanboi but normally I don't have any problem with companies expecting you to upgrade to the new model. But claiming Siri is PART OF the 4S when it's actually part of the OS, and deliberately turning it off on older hardware, is massively cynical.

The general public don't realise this of course, but if it does become public knowledge - and it's non-technical enough it could well do - some sort of uproar seems possible. The public like paying for shiny new handsets, but not being duped when the old one is perfectly fine to begin with.

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I've got a 4 and a 4S, and I'm not particularly bothered about it I do agree that it's a bit of a piss-take.

Could be they have good reason - maybe it causes previous devices go up in flames :) - but it's a good example of how zero transparency just doesn't help form positive opinions. Seems to be a lot of that going round these days.

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Facepalm

The app on the store had little to do with what Siri is now, it didn't speak back at all for starters. Can the Register not spread this nonsense?

As for it working perfectly on older phones I've only seen a badly made video of it working on the iPhone 4 with the big caveat of "you can't reproduce this because we're not releasing the hack". I've seen my share of fakes, so my policy is "public demo or it didn't happen"

Finally iFixit just showed that at least one feature - raise to speak - relies on specific hardware in the 4s.

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Anonymous Coward

Question for Metavisor:

Do you get iTunes credit or something for being such a dedicated and unfaltering Apple-apologist?

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Anonymous Coward

Anonymous Coward 10:56

I'm more of a thruth-apologist. If articles feel the need to twist the thruth to get their point across I tend to correct them.

But now why did you feel the need to ask? Let's stick with the topic at hand and skip the ad hominem attacks shall we.

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Silver badge

"YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE THRUTH"

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Anonymous Coward

Typical from the followers of the Church of Android: lots of personal attacks, downvotes, but no actual discussion of the arguments.

Even the Mormons do a better job.

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Anonymous Coward

There are many valid arguments being made here against what Apple have done. Why don't you reply to those instead of moaning about being downvoted?

Here's a good one for you to start with:

http://forums.theregister.co.uk/post/1227425

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Anonymous Coward

"Typical from the followers of the Church of Android: lots of personal attacks....."

Please explain what "followerrs of the church of Android” is if it isn't a personal attack? While you're at it could you define hypocrisy for me?

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Anonymous Coward

"Typical from the followers of the Church of Android: lots of personal attacks....."

ITYM

"Typical from the followers of the Cult of Apple: lots of personal attacks and assuming that anyone who doesn't like Apple's stance on issue X or Y is automatically a Microsoft or Android zealot."

And the company actively encourages this behavior. It's recently deceased CEO seemed to enjoy this.

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Well, duh.

If we make the only thing the 4GS has going for it a £20 upgrade for everyone else, we can watch 4GS sales nosedive in a way that makes the Touchpad seem a roaring success.

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Along with the walled garden App Store, this sort of thing is the main reason I switched to Android. I wouldn't mind so much if they were a bit more honest and said something like "Siri is a feature we have decided to only offer to owners of the iPhone 4S", but "No it simply doesn't work on older iPhones" is just bollocks. They did it with MMS too. I had an original iPhone that I used SwirlyMMS on, and later iOS 3 (I think?) could be tinkered with to enable MMS, and it worked perfectly. Yet Apple's response was always "No the hardware simply doesn't support it".

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Anonymous Coward

The new super fast camera app on Ice Cream Sandwich only works with the Galaxy Nexus, so better get down from your high horse.

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FAIL

Super fast camera... app?

At least if you are going to post some crap like that, at least know what you are talking about.

The camera hardware is what enables the super fast shutter speeds, not the app. What part of the "hardware specifications" did you miss... oh, ya, the "zero shutter lag" part.

Are you just another disillusioned Fruit Person or you just a Android hater because you have nothing better to do?

This is as bad as that fragmentation article... as if every Fruit device has been upgraded to the latest and has all the same features. At least make it look partially believable and not just a bold face lie.

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Yag
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This is really a great marketing move, even by Apple standards...

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Anonymous Coward

Yes, and the point is?

I thought The Register would know by now that software - especially complex one such as Siri - costs as much (or more) to create as hardware. Seems only fair that Apple has a way of recouping their costs.

Maybe you should run without ads for a month or two, to fully understand the concept.

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Sure does

....right up to the point where you realise they didn't develop a damn thing and merely bought out someone that had created it on their App store.

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Anonymous Coward

@thomas 4

Buying out still involves money right? Lots of it in this case.

Also add the likely per unit licensing fees payable to SRI International for the patents involved.

If you used the app you'd quickly understand it was a technology demo in advance of a sale. No way they would be giving away that service forever.

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So....

A walled garden within the walled garden.

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Holmes

Circles within circles

If they keep building walls like that then One Infinite Loop will end up looking like Minas Tirith. Then the Android folks will turn up with Grond.

I think I should stop now.

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Anonymous Coward

/shock

See title.

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Or...

Just turn on the "Accessibility" setting for reading text out loud when you triple click the home button, and the download Vlingo for free. Not as slick I'll admit, but it'll do 90% of Siri features on any iphone

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Anonymous Coward

There has to be SOME reason ..

.. to buy the 4S - a go faster stripe was never going to cut it .. at least, not for anyone with an ounce of common sense.

Hmmm .. yeah cancel that - forgot we were talking about apple-ites here ..

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Silver badge

well, it is a New Shiny Thing and there is a certain demographic that likes New Shiny Thing. There's also the 'fact' that 4S means 'for Steve', who died for all our sins and is the greatest contributor to the gaming industry, EVAH.

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WTF?

Question

Does anybody actually use voice stuff after the first 5 minutes of playing around?

I have it turned off on both Windows 7 and my Blackberry, just annoying to use - and I'm in an office on my own, hate to think what it would be like in a 'proper' office or a train.

I can see its usefulness while driving, but we've had voice dialing for years, can't see me p*ssing about tweeting while driving.

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Anonymous Coward

Used it a few times already. Nice way to send texts while doing my jog.

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Silver badge

My knee-jerk response...

... was to make some sort of joke about already having 100% of the utility of Siri on not only my iPhone 4 but on every single object I own, including hawks, horses, robes, etc.

That said, Siri isn't voice recognition. It's artificial intelligence with a voice recognition interface, just like Safari isn't a touch screen but rather a browser with a touch screen interface. Bog standard command-driven voice recognition is a long-standing feature of the iPhone, like it is of every other major platform.

I think the popular confusion shows just how interested anybody really is in voice recognition, especially on a device they primarily use in front of people, in noisy environments. Even if it could recognise and understand everything I said perfectly, I've no interest in announcing every single thing I email or look up to everybody nearby. Besides anything else I'm sure they'd prefer not to have to listen if given the choice.

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Well

Its sometimes easier to set an alarm by voice than go through the unlock screen.

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Anonymous Coward

So you'll have to jailbreak, what's the big problem? On Android you have to root and install custom ROMs to get the extra features. Is it any different?

Apple already gave away 90% of the features to everyone since the 3GS via the iOS 5 upgrade, it's far more generous than any other mobile manufacturer.

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Anonymous Coward

A hardware reason emerged yesterday from the iFixit folks

the 4S has a different IR proximity sensor which is active all the time when the screen is active to support the feature whereby Siri is activated by raising the phone near your face

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Facepalm

Hardware reason? Yeah, riiiiiiight...

Is it beyond Apple to program Siri to be activated by a double-tap (or similar) on the home button?

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Anonymous Coward

Just get rid of your iphone and get something that doesn't make you look like an old git technophobe!

Done.

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Happy

This is a non-story

If you are using old kit (as I am) then you have to expect that there will come a day when your kit will not support one or more of the new features in the next software release or the software release at all. With my iPhone 3GS its Siri and with my MacBook Pro its Lion.

There must come a time when it is simply too expensive to support older hardware which is limited and may ot have the required hardware features to support the new release.

I'm happy to keep using both items until a new feature emerges that I just have to have. At that point I will upgrade and all will be well again.

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Go

its not so sad not to have SIRI just get VLINGO instead

it seemed pretty clear that SIRI was the first incarnation of a talking assistant and the chances are that it would not be backward compatable.. so if you crave something that is similar i( i dont have a IPHONE 4S so am not sure how close this thing is ) try VLINGO it was reccommended by CNET

as being an alternative available as a free APP from the APP store

It works pretty well and it also works in the UK on my 3GS

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Stop

Vlingo

Running it on my Blackberry - it was one of the free apps. Still don't see the point though.

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Anonymous Coward

Voice licensing?

On today's news, the Telegraph interviewed Jon Briggs, the man behind Siri's UK voice. He says:

“You’re not allowed to license the voice to make money,” says Briggs. “So Apple’s Siri is part of the service once you’ve bought the phone.”

This may help explain why Apple can't just sell this separately.

Source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/apple/8879705/The-voice-behind-Siri-breaks-his-silence.html

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Just because somethings capable...

Doesnt mean its a good idea.

A 14.4K modem is capable of providing an internet connection good enough for the web. Does anyone here want to move onto one?

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Anonymous Coward

My understanding was ...

That although Siri *could* be made to work on an earlier iPhone it was impractical because it sapped the hardware. It is too slow, not responsive enough.

Not an iPhone owner myself (Android) and never having seen the hack work on an earlier model I can't be sure.

Here's hoping that they get Iris on the Android up to speed.

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wont someone pleeeease think of the ipads..

So, ok on the iphone, i get it, jail break or 4s. go tit.

but what about the ipad2? i dont see any reason it cant be on that.

is there any plan for it???

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Anonymous Coward

"but what about the ipad2? i dont see any reason it cant be on that."

I suspect 'iPad 3' is the reason.

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Bronze badge

How has everyone missed the obvious.....

..... point that Siri does not run on the iPhone? To the best of my knowledge what you run on the phone is an interface that connects to backend servers which do the hard work. Which is why most of the Siri functions failed the other day when someone punched the wrong button at Cupertino.

As for the IR sensor excuse, that is pathetic. Even if the older phones cannot provide the same function through hardware it's not that hard to push a button on the screen is it?

New tech not possible on old phones? After an update last night my Xperia Arc can now take panoramic and 3D panoramic pics, this with a single lense camera (ok I need a bloody 3d tv to look at them though). If they were honest most people wouldn't care.

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404
Bronze badge

Oddly enough...

... my 2010 Ford F150 (not to be confused with the Ferrari F150 lol) has Sync, a Microsoft software product, that enables voice activated controls for just about any smartphone via Bluetooth.

The funny part is, the Sync voice texting only works with an iPhone. Any iPhone.

Just saying...

Sent with my Blackberry lmao!

;)

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Holmes

Shock Horror

Apple are a business inclined to make oodles of cash! Shock!

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Pint

Have you people even bothered to watch the 4S promo?

It's all there in black and white...well, on a white background anyway.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xBe0zjdURc4

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