looked pretty damn explicit to me
but what do I know?
The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has quashed a complaint from a fanboi disappointed by Siri's lack of UK knowledge - and said the punter had above-average expectations compared with what it would expect from the "average Brit". Siri, the voice-recognising virtual assistant on the iPhone 4S, is unable to direct users in …
Well, this is what happens when you advertise beta software. Based on the fact that Apple openly state and re-iterate that Siri is Beta (on their own website no less), and it's not inferred in the advertising, the ASA should have ruled against Vodafone/Apple. IMO.
UK iPhone users are frustrated because they have a phone that has the technical capability for a feature they cannot use, when other users can. They paid a premium for the device, and yet the most cash-rich company in the world that sold it to them does not care to spend the money to make it work.
Legally, Apple are ok. Morally... draw your own conclusions.
I disagree there, that business location wouldn't work outside the US was a pretty well known fact - it wasn't kept secret. This was simply raised by a chancer.
And who is to say that they aren't spending the money to make it work? I imagine theres a fair bit of database creation required to make it work, there might be licensing issues to get someone else's data, etc.
"Pubs in Manchester"
...followed by a list of search results. Took about 10 seconds, though I guess it would be faster if you are in an area with better mobile coverage.
"The register we never actually said siri would work in the UK."
...followed by a search page with this article on top. Even got it despite the title not being exactly what I said.
"The register Chad H besides the point"
I'll let you guess what that comes up with.
Come on Apple. Keep up, won't you?
Well I did not know that the toy did not work though I have to say the whole iDross set has never appealed to me, I guess I have more sense than money.
It appears that everyone has heard that some apple phones have a speech 'thing', some know that it only works if you have the right apple phone, but very few knew that only a few bits work on the allegedly functional devices.
>the only bits that are really 'siri' are the voice recognition stuff.
Nope, that's done by Nuance Recognizer running (on Windows) in Apple's datacentre, its actually reasonably good with UK regional accents where its trained to individuals - but running heuristics over crowd sourced voicedata from a dozen or so phonetically discrete UK dialects is never going to work anywhere near as well or as quickly.
"On the other hand, one could argue that someone shelling out £400 for a phone partly based on a certain feature should have the sense to do 5 minutes of internet research or try it in the shop, rather than trust an advert."
a good and very valid point, except for one very minor exception....
this is apple customers we are talking about.... new apple product = must buy without question !
Well.. They should.
But apparently, there has been a grass roots movement which claims the spec don't matter, and nobody researches because Apple products just work..
Except when they don't, and the customer gets blamed for believing in Apple's PR fluff, which up to then was scientifically proved fact..
This was Vodaphone's ad. Why the hell does the ASA let itself be referred to Apple?
Vodaphone may be repeating what they have been told by Apple, but they must know that what Apple was saying referred to the product in the US. When Vodaphone repeated Apple's words in a UK context, they were making an inaccurate statement about Siri in the UK, not an accurate one about it in the US.
Rubbish! The average consumer believes exactly what is implied in adverts. Advertisers know this, which is why they imply all sorts of stuff with 'sciency' soundbites and only put the real information in tiny small print which is generally rendered unreadable by MPEG artifacts.
For a UK user to have their 'Can Search Maps' app to search UK maps.
Especially as their device knows they're in the UK, speaking 'British' English (if they ever had the choice), etc.
I bet it installs stuff in French in France so to assume your device is properly localised is a reasonable thing.
It's half an application. So much for magical/revolutionary/whatever.
I'd say it's perfectly unreasonable to demand that a BETA release of a feature support absolutely everyone and everything perfectly, right out of the box, right this minute.
Apple was pretty bloody explicit about this during the iPhone 4S' official launch event. It's not their fault the media couldn't be arsed to mention that this was pre-release software, and still is. They've made its Beta status perfectly clear on their own website.
But it's only alpha stage which is functionally incomplete. Beta is for when your core functionality is complete and you're finding and squashing application breaking bugs.
What they should have had was a US flag on it and the label "some functions do not work outside of the US" attached to it. Would be far more descriptive than the criminally abused "beta" tag.
No, it's not an Alpha.
The application itself appears to be working pretty much as advertised. It's the back-end databases that need the work. There are roughly 3000 languages on this planet. How many would you expect to be supported from day one of a beta release?
Siri relies on third party databases and application to do its stuff—that's kind of its point, and why pointing at "Evi" and the like misses said point like a blind man trying to shoot a goose with a water pistol.
Wolfram Alpha's servers are clearly playing a major role in its ability to answer many questions, of the "What's the weather like in [X]?" variety. Try typing "Che tempo fa a Roma oggi?" into their search engine and see how badly if fails to cope with anything other than English. That question is Italian for "What's the weather like in Rome today?" Wolfram Alpha clearly attempts a translation, but fails to give any useful results. Ask the same question in English and it works fine.
At least in the UK, Siri is able to understand what you're asking it. Until the Italian language support is rolled out (this year, apparently), Italians don't even get that much.
"How many would you expect to be supported from day one of a beta release?"
ALL iPHONE languages. Otherwise it isn't feature-complete, and thus is not a beta. To say 300 languages is incredibly trite - what should be supported is ALL languages that the iPhone supports, and this includes British English and many others.
As someone who was a software QA tester by profession for a good long while, I can say that we NEVER allowed beta acceptance on software that wasn't fully localised - spelling mistakes, fudged translation, and fart noises aside: missing localisation means NOT beta.
So now its the medias fault that it wasn't mentioned in the adverts? Even Apples own adverts? You know, the ones without a major providers name tagged on the end?
Which begs the question, why the fudge is the app being used as a major selling point when still in Beta?
I know you would be the first to shit a Newton if HP popped up with adverts for pc's running Windows 8 now it is in beta.
So WTF are doing advertising it? If its beta then put it on the phone, and people will think of it as a cool extra, but they actually advertised as a feature of the phone. You can't sell something and then turn around and say "Don't expect it to work, we're still devolping some of it"
Its like LG selling a TV. You get it home, set it up, and then find that the built in PVR won't work. The adverts says it does, the grunts in the shop told you it did, but its okay because if your geeky enough you'd have watched the launch event on a website.
... not being an iPhone 4S owner but having spoken to other iPhone 4S owners I was lead to believe that Siri did work in the UK. Not that I'm bothered either way as I still have a year left on my contract for my existing phone (Galaxy S) and I've never really used any of the voice features on any of my previous phones.
Still I'm sure there are probably folks out there who have bought an iPhone 4S after seeing the Siri adverts (actually, I can think of two people who did).
This new uGizmoPhone can cure any cancer, generate energy out of thin air and will allows you to call your friend and familly*
* Cancer cure and energy generation may not be available in all languages or in all areas, and features may vary by area. Cancer Cure is only available in alpha centaury sytem and energy generation in the center of your local star.
... What? This is a legitimate ad!
It's about time advertisers like Apple were prevented from having misleading adverts with caveats. It is not fair to say "didn't you read the small print?" Small print that I struggle to read on a 50" screen, so God help anyone on normal screen.
"Sequence shortened" - fuck off! Show it properly or don't show it al all (Apple is not the only guilty party here).
"Unlimited" - but it is limited.
"May not be available in all regions" - then don't show that advert in that region!!!!
So this guy might have been pushing his luck if he wanted cash out of Apple, but too many advertisers are relying on caveats to allow them to imply a service or function everywhere when that isn't the case.
Bollocks. I've not read reviews (usually too many conflicting opinions to bother wasting time), I've just watched the cool stuff on the adverts broadcast IN THE UK. If I wanted it to do this stuff for me too, I would be quite annoyed that an ADVERTISED feature is not available. It's really quite simple, if several steps have been omitted to make a smoother advert (re. the app store one), that's one thing. But if a featureset just plain isn't available, that's called lying. It's called placing these wonderful images into the minds of punters, grabbing their cash, then giving them the finger by pointing to some disclaimer. If the features are not available, they should not be advertised. It's really that simple.
"...I've just watched the cool stuff on the adverts broadcast IN THE UK...
...If the features are not available, they should not be advertised. It's really that simple."
And what the ASA have found is that at no point in any of Apple's ads do they claim Siri can do things it cannot. It does in fact do everything that is shown on the advert in the UK. I have literally just watched it and tried to mimic everything shown and have done with a 100% success rate. At no point have Apple, or any of their channel partners, stated that the feature set is comparable to the US feature set. In fact they have repeated this publicly extremely often. Now I'm not actually a fan of Siri as I feel that it's not mature enough, I put it to you and other that your moral outrage is aimed squarely at who this is and nothing to do with the circumstances or actual facts of the matter. Swap Apple for Google or Microsoft and you'd be busily defending the decision. Hypocrisy is a contemptible trait.
Wow, ten down-votes for saying Apple shouldn't be hung for not saying the iPhone 4 didn't have Siri. The anti-Apple brigade sure do like an Apple story, don't they?
I too have seen the UK Siri advert on TV recently and it doesn't show anything that it can't actually do in the UK.
Personally, I'm not all that taken with Siri partly because it doesn't have the US features at the moment.
The funny thing is, in general, Apple tend to focus on what the device does whereas other manufacturers tend to show a list of specs and leave the reader to infer what it can do. That inference can cause problems, for the customer, when, because of some creative spec listing, the whole is slightly less than the sum of its parts.
As a hopefully non-contentious example some routers and wi-fi access points are described as dual band 2.4/5GHz but you have to look very closely to see they are simultaneous dual band 'Or' rather than 'And'.
I gave up on Siri on the day I got my new phone. I kept the first question pretty simple, but it still failed.
"Where am I?"; "I'm sorry but I can only provide location information in North America".
Oookaaayyyy... something even simpler then:
"What time is it?"; "I'm sorry, I don't know what time it is in <the name of the street I was on>".
So, it wouldn't tell me where I was when I asked it straight, but it /did/ tell me where I was when I asked it a different question.
"remind me to buy milk after work" - I haven't seen this actually do what it does on the Ad. Things like "tell my wife I'm going to make it" don't work either. Anyone with an iphone managed to do the things they do on the ad? The ASA should be all over this - a reasonable person would expect you can do the exact same things as shown on an ad. Never mind getting all advanced asking "where am I?" and the like!
All that said, I've got an Android, and things aren't all peachy there either, but the main difference there is that we don't have a smart advert telling us that those things work when they don't.
Same here, I'd never asked for a reminder when I leave work before so I have just tried it & Siri asked me to put my work address on my contact details so it knew where that was.
Seems fine to me, I was even surprised how well the dictation function worked a few days ago when I used it to write a couple of sentences in an email, I think it got one word wrong out of something like 25.
Much as I hate to see actual facts get in the way of a good slagging match, the advert doesn't say that you can use Siri to find local businesses, it says it "can help you find stuff", which it can (stuff!=everything).
If you go to Apple's US & UK websites, you can watch both the US and UK versions of the Siri advert and see that the localized search bit is cut out of the UK version. I think what we have here is someone who has seen the (US) launch video or seen a (US) advert trying to pin the blame for his own stupidity on Vodafone/Apple.
Oh, and I don't think anyone has noticed the irony, but this is an Apple vs Apple User fight. You can't label all iPhone users as idiot fanbois and then stand up for them when they make stupid mistakes like this, you're supposed to laugh at them and point.
And if you don't have a BBC accent straight from the 1900's, you're saying it wrong too.
It's been pretty hilarious watching my companies middle managers try Siri out for the first time so far.
Evi on the other hand understands what I'm saying extremely well, although it still hasn't been able to comply with a single request for me yet.
I think all the voice functions out there need a bit longer in the oven.....not I'd ever use them in public, I'd rather be caught trous down and hands full than be caught talking TO my phone :D
Mussolini (he who invented modern fasism) said: "Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power."
Not the actual merger, that is communism, rather the merger of their power.
So I state again, that this is an example of fascism (aka corporatism) at work.
The corporate businesses, the governments and their apparats (which include quangoes) invariably side with each other when deliberating issues where those that pay them are concerned.
NB: fascism has nothing to do with "the far right" as the BBC and other assorted lefties like to state.
An authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.
(in general use) Extreme right-wing, authoritarian, or intolerant views or practice.
But yes, I guess it does make sense to let a fascist tell you what it means, rather than take an objective stance.
So because Google tels you that fascism is extreme right-wing, authoritarian, of intolerant views or practice, you are somehow taking an objective view?
Pehaps you should understand where "right wing" comes from and how that phrase was debauched, and then you might understand who have the intolerant views or practice.
The term is derived from the 18th century French court, where those who sat to the right of the King were of the view that there was nothing that could be done for the poor and wretched that they could not do for themselves, whilst those on the left thought that something must be done.
During the 1930's, Germany was a hotbed of radical politics, and the communists who wanted (as in Russia) to control everything, the people, the land, the means of production etc., whilst the national socialists thought that allowing businessmen to run their businesses, and farmers to farm their own land would be more effective for building the socialist nirvana… They were both left wing, they both wanted to control others. They both turned out to be progenitors of the worst and most violent century in human history.
Meanwhile the "right wing" got on with their own lives, and tried to ignore what was coming at them.
So fascism is not "right wing", bearing in mind that the National Socialists were both fascist and socialist, but they became labelled by the communists as "right wing" because they were slightly less economically radical than them.
Anyway, fascism and communism are just economic philosophies, but fascism has been more successful because most of the governments in the world are essentially fascist, even the Chinese failed economically until they modified their system of government from Mao's strictly communist regime, to Teng's textbook fascist system.
For a real example of a non fascist and oddly right wing nation, one really has to go back to the early 1930's before Roosevelt nationalised the dollar, after that even the right wing USA started to move to fascism.
As for intolerance, that is usually practised and theorised by politicians either in plain clothes (or in frocks… religious types) who want to control others… Ditto authoritarianism… And most of those are of the left, perhaps Buddhism being the rare example of non-interference in other's business (or right wing).
Which leaves us with Mussolini (you know, he who invented modern fascism) and his comment.
Oh and if you want to label the "right wing"… Libertarian is acceptable, fascist is NOT.
"So because Google tels you that fascism is extreme right-wing, authoritarian, of intolerant views or practice, you are somehow taking an objective view?"
Oxford Dictionaries Online main definition:
an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.
Despite the fact that I have a good number of iDevices (five), I always thought that it was very easy to misconstrue that rather silly advertising line, it depends where one puts the accent, doesn't it.
It cannot be a brag to suggest that your products just work, it could mean that with just the slightest bit of tweaking or through heavy use, that they will fail to work.
This would be the very same ASA that deemed the total corruption of the word "Unlimited" by the mobile network operators was perfectly acceptable. One has to wonder who exactly pays the ASA's salaries. Would it be us, the general public, or the mobile network operators?
ASA = Fuckwits (and that is a perfectly apt description of the service being provided)
>All the info was there in the advert if he chose to pay attention.<
I checked their page out and found this is big bold text page centre:
>It understands what you say.
Talk to Siri as you would to a person. Say something like “Tell my wife I’m running late.” “Remind me to call the vet.” “Any good burger joints around here?” Siri does what you say, finds the information you need, then answers you. It’s like you’re having a conversation with your iPhone.<
In tiny light grey text at the bottom of the page:
>Siri is available in Beta only on iPhone 4S and requires Internet access. Siri may not be available in all languages or in all areas, and features may vary by area. Cellular data charges may apply.<
Almost like they're trying to hide the fact - so yes, the info is there, but a lie of omission is still a lie. Why not put the 'but' along with the main body of text?
>"May not be available in all regions" - then don't show that advert in that region!!!!<
Oh, and by the way, I just asked (using voice) my Android phone for the nearest McDonalds and it brought up a local map showing about four McDonalds, with SatNav turned on, so I guess, in this instance, Google (also an American based company) wins. Suck it!
(Saying 'the nearest pub' brought up a search page with 'the good pub guide' No 1 on the listing).
And now, the version from the correct web site. Facts, eh? Funny old things; work better when they're right. From the UK Apple site:
It understands what you say.
Talk to Siri as you would to a person. Say something like, “Tell my wife I’m running late” or “Remind me to call the vet” or “Do I need an umbrella?” and Siri answers you. It does what you say and finds the information you need. And then it hits you. You’re actually having a conversation with your iPhone.
I understood, like most "early adopters" at launch, that siri was in beta and not all features were in play yet. The only problem is, that was October, and since then we've seen zero progress - no further "beta" releases, no opportunity to feed back on the current beta, no road plan or indication of when we'll see a final product. So on balance, yep, Apple have disappointed me on this one.
Vodafone were able to pass the buck to Apple? When Vodafone is the publisher? So.....I can post what the hell I want on the web and if anyone questions the content I can refer them to the source of the material. That's one helluva loophole for anyone wanting to post hate, porn or whatever right there. Just when I thought a had a tenuous grip on liability law I read something like this.
Every time I read an article about the iphone4s and siri, I cant help but think about a story I once heard about a car being imported into America from Japan.
*The car was called the "Sarrion" which is not a bad name for a model of car, and it got its inspiration from names like "mustang". The Car was supposed to be called "Stallion", but due to but due to a misunderstanding due to accents, the Stallion became Sarrion. ..
I just cant help but think Siri got its name in a very similar cock up!!
*I dont know if the story is indeed true, but it was featured on an episode of "top Gear". I have not been able to confirm it as true in the 5 min of research I did before posting.... but I do really hope it is true !!
All this fanboi hate and it just occured to me how long I've (vaguely) followed voice recognition technology. Now everybody is frothing at the mouth because of regional differences, and this is when the whole world is your market! I wonder if this is an actual viable example of it starting to become 'normal' to talk to a computer, or is it more normal talking to yourself? Oh - and I think the ASA is far too polite about its proper job! Since I get adverts stuffed in my eyes every day (like most other people ) and it's not difficult to find some bullshit or disclaimer or whatever, Id say the ASA needs to practice kicking ass a bit more!
Its nothing to do with regional dialect, the advertised feature just plain doesn't work in the UK.
Someone suggested that he should have asked in the shop, but as Vodafone themselves actually believed the BS coming from Apple, it stands to reason the average mobi wallah at carphone warehouse would believe it as well
All this week (probably longer but tend to ignore all of Apples brain washing attempts) they've been very heavily doing nothing but Siri adverts on tv. And no where on the advert does it mention it's beta, and it's made very clear you are supposedly about to locate your members of the family on the Themes using voice.
I maybe wrong here, but that clearly just goes against everything the ASA said in this case.
As betas go, it's pretty poor. As for a commercial release and putting it in the hands of regular users, someone clearly jumped the gun quite badly. Sometimes the word mangling is beyond parody; trying to set an alarm for 11, I received replies which included "unable to give directions in Rwanda" and "calling Mohamed".
Having said that, it's a nice *idea*, and I'm sure the next version will improve it greatly. The next version after that might even be usable! (Come to think of it, the original iPhone had neither 3g data nor downloadable apps - but look at iPhones now...)
showing a woman asking what the weather tonight is in an English voice and then being told that its fine in Paris really means 'don't expect this to work in the UK'?
Cos theres no way someone anyone from the US can get to Paris for the evening unless thats Paris Texas.
However you read it that has to be a big fat lie.
I don't remember seeing the location services being advertised in the UK.
I saw many trailers and adverts for Siri online that did, oh but wait, they were the US ones.
Siri isn't suitable for use, it's of little use without the location services but there are ways round bits of it. Evi is slightly better but doesn't seem to like basic questions sometimes.
Siri works, if all the things aren't available it doesn't mean Siri doesn't work.
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