The use of cell phone speech-recognition technology is a growing field and has come a long way and is improving all the time. Still, it has a way to go before we can talk and be heard without mistakes.
When you think about it it’s a wonder this feature works at all. You’re expecting your phone to understand different accents at varying distances from its microphone. You’re asking it to understand your voice with all types of noise competing in the background.
What if you had a couple of cocktails and have started to slur your words? Do you think Siri or other voice recognition software would understand Midwesterns’ use of the word “Druthers?” Such as, if I had my druthers. Or, would it know “Tough tomatoes!” means tough luck?
It’s a lot to ask from a little piece of software tucked inside your phone and it’s no wonder people become frustrated and have been known to yell and scream at automated voices coming from their cell phones.
Here are some funny examples, of voice recognition gone terribly wrong:
What I actually said to my computer: Frappuccino.
How my voice software translated it: Fred Pacino.
Siri even has a sense of humor!
New York Times reporter, David Pogue, wrote a recent article in which he reviewed Google’s Moto X phone. He’s a funny guy! I had to laugh when he wrote about the voice recognition’s personality.
“And then there’s the issue of personality: Siri has it, Android doesn’t.”
“We’re talking about wisecracks, jokes, attitude, addressing you by name. If you ask Siri, “Who’s your daddy?” she replies: “You are. Can we get back to work now?” Say, “Beam me up, Siri,” and she says: “Please remove your belt, shoes and jacket, and empty your pockets.” Say, “Talk dirty to me,” and she replies, “Humus. Compost. Pumice. Silt. Gravel.”
My ten year old son does this all the time with my phone when we’re driving and he gets bored. He asks my phone questions and then berates it for the replies. It keeps him occupied for a good ten minutes at a time.
But Apple haters (yup, they’re out there) practically spit up a fur ball when you mention Siri’s personality. Pogue reports the anti-Apple group says, “It’s not useful! It’s a parlor trick! It strains me to avoid profanity in describing how stupid you sound!”
According to Lifehacker.com, the best way to get voice assistants to work is to keep your sentences short and to the point. So, don’t stop mid-sentence, don’t ask more than one question at a time, and forget about niceties, like please and thank you.
Lifehacker also says, “You also want to speak quickly. It’s a natural tendency to speak to your voice recognition apps in the same way you would a puppy: slow and methodically. But, it’s actually best to speak quickly. Speak naturally and clearly, but don’t strain to enunciate your words or speak incredibly slowly.
This much is true: Cellphone speech recognition technology is getting more reliable, quickly. Pretty soon, we’ll be talking more to our phones than our friends!
What do you think? Do you have a crush on your voice assistant or would rather crush your voice assistant? Tell us your thoughts.