Iris - Siri for the Rest of Us

Voice command is nothing new to Android ; indeed, it has been included from day one. My Froyo-powered Optimus has a great voice command utility - press one decicated button and say "Open Blogger" and the program opens. Ditto for voice dialing, and of course voice search is great.

But with the release of the iPhone 4s and its Siri utility, Indian softwere company Dextera took on the the challenge of creating a passable alternative for the more popular Android platform. In an eight-hour coding frenzy, they came up with Iris. (That's eight whole hours.)

Now, Iris is in no way up to the task of challenging Siri - yet. The program is still in alpha development, however, Dextera has been releasing regular updates, and the program has been getting a lot of buzz in tech media and blog circles. I couldn't resist dowloading, and giving it the most basic of commands.

 What Iris brings to the table over Androids voice command utility is an odd sense of humor. One is not really sure what one is going to get when posing a question. This one made me laugh out loud.

I see the resemblance

It (she?) works fairly well at basic communication command like calling and messaging. Just be sure that the name of the person you are trying to reach is pretty clear. I could not get it to understand I wanted to call my buddy Joel Klampert, no way, no how.

From what I understand, Siri can use some of the iOS productivity tools, but is still struggling with the hardware integration. Iris is in the same boat, it seems. But I have no doubt that as this segment develops, we are on the way to having phones that do what we say, with a little wit tossed in. Just to make things more interesting.

Oh, and if you haven't figured it out yet, Iris is Siri spelled backwards.


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