Google “Assistant” coming late 2012, will best Apple’s Siri

March 3, 2012
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Google has had what we all know as "Voice Actions" long before Apple's Siri came along, it just wasn't shown off on the same big stages and bright lights of commercials. Since then, Google's been working on what rumors and reports have called Project Majel -- a Siri-like voice assistant similar to the current voice actions only better. New details are starting to leak that might have also confirmed the name.

We have heard various reports and rumors on Google's Majel but now according to TechCrunch it will officially be called Google Assistant. This will be a Google wide operation that is being managed by the Android team. Not only that but rumors also suggest that after the initial launch Google will open source the technology and allow developers to build amazing and intuitive apps around "Assistant" and more.

Google's had voice actions for ages, and they've been waiting to make it even better before releasing anything major. This could also all tie into Android@Home or some of those other in-house projects we've reported on in the past (linked to below). Google hired Mike Cohen, the guy behind Nuance but Google and their new "Assistant" will go far beyond voice actions or Siri in many ways. Here is what we are hearing.

-- Get the world’s knowledge into a format a computer can understand.
-- Create a personalization layer — Experiments like Google +1 and Google+ are Google’s way of gathering data on precisely how people interact with content.
-- Build a mobile, voice-centered “Do engine” (‘Assistant’) that’s less about returning search results and more about accomplishing real-life goals.

According to sources the project will have those three main things and more, be headed up and developed by the Android team, and also has Google search engineer Amit Singhalon board to make this a complete package. If this doesn't sound amazing to you then I don't know what will. I can't wait to see what Google has in store for us next and hopefully we get a tease at Google I/O 2012. Reports are saying we'll see Assistant in late 2012. Who's excited?


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  • Sassigal

    Google me too syndrome. What a disgusting company. Looking at windows 8 just emphasizes how utterly devoid of innovation google is.

    • Austin Hutchins

      google did not make windows 8.

      • Sassigal

        The point is Microsoft was able to come up with a new fresh take on touch screen operating system. When one looks at it they don’t say it looks like this or that. Google cannot do that Android looks like a cheap iOS rip off even on its best day.

      • Troy Wilson

        Too bad Android has been around longer than iOS. I love how when Steve Jobs said something, it was gospel. If anything, iOS was ripped off of Android Inc. back in 2003!

      • Sassigal

        You know it is totally irrelevant where Android was in 2003 because nothing of consumer use came out of it until the iPhone appeared. Certainly Android as it is today has very litte based on that 2003 Android but a lot based on the 2007 IOS.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Johnny-Mwl/1664358545 Johnny Mwl

        . . .  or iOS5 (forward) is HEAVILY based off of the innovations of Android.  Notifications, the use of folders within icons, and other ideas come to mind.

        Now, if you REALLY want to play that game?  The Apple iPhone is a ripoff of the LG Prada, and the operating system is a rip off of Android, Windows Mobile AND Symbian.

        See how ridiculous your slope of logic is?

      • Sassigal

        one feature does not warrant the ” heavily ” characterization. As for the LG Prada, why did they not follow through with a lawsuit against Apple if they really had a strong case. Now could you please point out what features of Symbian and widows 8 are in IOS exactly ?

      • Troy Wilson

        He didn’t say anything about Windows 8. He said Windows Mobile that was available for earlier smartphones and pocket PCs. It was based off Windows CE. It was before anything Apple had. If MS didn’t drop the ball on this everyone would be like Apple who? hell you actually navigate the file system and run office or any program for that matter. Thank for reminding me Johnny, good on ya!

      • Blake Ourso

        Why do ISP’s try to filter my internet use for downloading stuff when douches like this are legally allowed to run rampant around the internet?  

      • Androidess

        Don’t bother attempting to provide Linux 101 to this bejeweled proud carrier of iCrap. Better off spending your weekend spamming ios sites, like she, conversely is…

      • Troy Wilson

        It is totally relevant in terms of who “ripped off” who. If we both came up with the idea of cherry twizzlers and we both had an tangible item created, yet you went to market before me, I somehow ripped you off? Even if I started development before you. Why do you think Android incorporated? To protect their personal assets, to give credibility, and protect the name. You don’t know at what state Android 1.0 was in, nor do you know the roadmap they had planned BEFORE Google bought them. Also, it wasn’t iOS until June 7 2010, it was just iPhone OS. To refresh your memory, Android 1.5 had all the features, that iOS introduced, 2 years prior. Copy/paste, MMS, true multitasking, voice dialing, voice texting, etc… Your argument is invalid.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001613835308 Paul Smith

        All of this dirt slinging is funny, but lets all not forget 1 thing the iphone parts list are all from some asian land. The same land that makes android, thats why this is so funny!

      • Hazeblaze777

        Lol, nothing about Android touch screens look like iOS. iOS is a grid of icons, Android is far more customizable and a mix of icons and widgets. More importantly, ALL of the updates in both iOS 4 & 5 were features copied either from Android or Blackberry.

        Liking Apple products is cool… but you you have no idea what you’re actually talking about :-/

    • http://www.androidcommunity.com Cory Gunther

      It’s not “me too” syndrome. Google voice actions have been around since the Nexus One and before Siri, before.
      I’ve been setting my alarm with my voice for over a year and a half.

    • Interested

      How is this me too? Google had voice commands before Apple. So if Apple introduces something which does what Google does but improves on it then it is not me too? But if Google takes something that Apple does and improves on it then it IS me too. I get it.

      • Sassigal

        The fundamental difference is that Siri understands normal speech not per determined commands. Also Apple had these voice control commands since the 3gS which I got in 2009. But I had to say specific commands to get a response. Siri is revolutionary by comparison

      • DMJ

        I think you need to learn what innovation means.  If Google makes a product that works better than Siri that is called innovation.  Just like a car company making a car that gets better gas mileage than cars that are currently in existence that is innovation not a “me too syndrome.”  TVs are getting bigger and better not because of a “me too syndrome” but because of innovation.  That is how the world works, but it’s funny how the iSheeps complain when a company dares to innovate something of Apple’s.  And Siri is revolutionary?  Just because Apple says that it is doesn’t make it so.

      • Sassigal

        Coming up with an original idea that is innovation. Improving on an existing idea after another company saw the potential first, this is is not innovation by any stretch. So the google terminator glasses may be. A Siri counterpart uhmmm not so much !!!

      • Hank

        Sassigal, you are a no good trolling steve jobs cock sucking fanboy, get off this website.

      • Sassigal

        Ahha here comes the troll and shill rhetoric. Never fails !! On cue dude what took you so long? LOL

      • Hank

        Your spamming the comment section of a article on a tech website, and you don’t expect attention? I think you are looking for attention, I guess not having a vagina to go home to does that to you.

      • Sassigal

        Do you really think you can win any fight in life by trashing your opponent. Only if you have no frontal lobe to respond with. That does this to you. You are a sad individual.

      • alpha11sponge

        Doesn’t claiming someone has no frontal lobe constitute as “thrashing your opponent?”

      • Sassigal

        Not when it is in defense of an attack. Besides the discussion was objective until someone introduced this language. Thereafter any response is fair game IMO

      • Reg

        When are you going to respond to johnny sassigal?

      • Carlos G. Limardo

        Nobody needs to beat you after your statement, here let me quote… “Coming up with an original idea that is innovation.”

      • Austin Hutchins

        actually, the comment was completely different when i first responded.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Johnny-Mwl/1664358545 Johnny Mwl

        Wow Sassigal…  Coming up with an original idea is called INVENTION.
        Making an invention better is called INNOVATION.

        Surely you could’ve used Siri to tell you the difference?

      • Carlos G. Limardo

        I knew if I kept reading, someone would correct him. I’m starting to see why these Apple fan boys are all confused about ‘innovation’, they have no idea what it means! 

      • DMJ

        Iphone 4s getting a dual core processor because Android had them is a me too syndrome.  Putting in a pull down notification like Android on ios 5 is a me too syndrome.  And if Iphone 5 gets a bigger screen, that is definitely a me too syndrome also.

      • Sassigal

        No the industry and the chip technology progresses and all Hardware companies are going to make use of this. This is not an advantage of one over another. As for the screen size, God I hope they don’t mess with it. This is a cell phone not a mini computer , there is an iPad for that.

      • Matthew Fura

        This is one of the most inane posts I’ve ever read.  If it’s a cell phone and not a computer, go buy a Moto v600 to make your phone calls and lug your iPad around for everything else.  Meanwhile, I’ll use my 4.7 inch Nexus for everything.

      • Sassigal

        Yep right ! Telcos actually don’t have enough spectrum to support all that you plan to do with your Nexus . Rude awakening

      • Matthew Fura

        The same goes for your “innovative” iPhone.  Oh, and way to change the subject.

      • Sassigal

        Sorry what subject ? The point I was making is that there is a limited amount of data that can be accommodated currently and it will only get worse. So gaming and streaming and the rest are going to be limited on any phone anyway so if that is the case and I need a wi fi to do all that so then why be constrained on a small 4 or 5 inch screen at all? Just use a tablet or a laptop or a gaming console.

      • Blake Ourso

        Some people hate reality….like unlimited data on verizon :) yay for grandfathering. Oh and yes, i’ve used over 5g a month and haven’t gotten throttled yet.  So stfu and suck the apploe teet more. 

      • Androidess

        SassiGirl is just an envious and trolling hater :)

      • Hazeblaze777

        Actually Siri understands predetermined commands as well, not fluid speech. More importantly, Android DID IN FACT have the technology long before iOS. You’re just in denial.

      • migs

        People are forgetting that speech recognition has been around since before google or android. Apple had it for a short while on their newton pda which came out many years before android.

  • IRIE4IPIER

    Why? A siri is bloatware IMO, if Google does this, I will definitely be removing it from my phones and tablets. I like how quick it is now, I don’t need my phone having an app that talks to me. Google must be impressed by that stupid app called siri. Why everyone copies apple is beyond me. Ya ya say all you want that android had voice actions first but not like this, and Google is stupid if they make this “me too” move.

  • Guest

    Great… only 1-2 *YEARS* behind.
    Again.

  • Norton Junkmail

    Can anyone spell fragmentation????

  • Norton Junkmail

    In other words, imagine this fully integrated “Google Assistant” working across the dozens of android versions and hardware out there.  It’s called fragmentation – a developers’ worst nightmare.

    If they can get something out there that even begins to compete with Siri, it will only work on the Motorola phones that Google now has control over.

    By the way, does anyone recall when Apple released Siri to the public? Wasn’t that about 6 months ago?  Does anyone think that Apple has a gold mine of data from Siri users over the last 6 months which will be used to further refine and innovate the product? 

    Oh yea, and by the way, Apple purposefully stripped much of the already existing functionality of the Siri product when they released it in Oct 2011.  They did this for a reason.  Google is truly behind, and I would say it is more like 2-3 years behind in the Artificial intelligence that Siri excels in, it is not just a voice recognition SW, that is provided by Nuance which is available to anyone, including Google.

    • http://twitter.com/ShadowEO CJ Laing

      But the thing is that Apple didn’t build an AI for Siri, Siri grabs a majority of her data from WolframAlpha.

  • Les Morton

    Cory Gunther needs to have his credentials revoked as a technical writer when he says that the “Google Assitance” will be out in about 10 months and that it is going to beat Siri. 

    What??? 

    Are you saying dearest Cory, that “Google Assistant” will beat

    a) the existing Siri implementation which is 6 months old already,

    b) the features that were built into the Siri product that Apple stripped out before release in the iPhone 4s which are 2 years old at this point,

    c) the Siri product that will be available in the iOS ecosystem in 10 months?

    I highly doubt that you have any profitable insight into what the Siri product will be in 10 months because you haven’t demonstrated in your little article a proper knowledge of what the Siri product already is – you should do more reading about what the Siri product actually is that Apple purchased years ago.

    • VelvetLlama

      Looks like dearest Cory was right.

  • JaBLeS661

    Google Voice Commands is far superior than Siri. Let’s be honest, Siri only works using the internet while GVC is baked into Android. GVC is far more accurate. Once Majel comes around it’s GAME OVER for Siri. That’s the truth. 
    http://gizmodo.com/5888973/siri-vs-android-voice-actions

  • Sameer Singh

    Wow, Google’s voice recognition is already far superior to Siri. Making this open would revolutionize Voice recognition.

    http://techthoughts17.blogspot.in/ 

  • Seberson

    Google bringing a me too application to market. For sure Siri will continue to be schooled as well and consumers will love her for it.

  • Les Morton

    Anyone care to see what the visionaries at Google said about Siri?  Who is copying who?  Who was caught with their pants down?  Do I have to explain what these comments from a Sr. executive from Google really mean?

    “I don’t believe your phone should be an assistant,” Rubin Wednesday
    told an audience at AllThingsD AsiaD conference. “You shouldn’t be
    communicating with the phone,” he added Although “to some degree it is
    natural for you to talk to your phone,” Rubin isn’t convinced Siri will
    be accepted by consumers. “We’ll see how pervasive it gets,” he told
    Wall Street Journal tech guru Walt Mossberg.

    Andy Rubin is Google’s senior vice president of mobile.  He is in charge of Google mobile strategy – he said this on Oct 20, 2011.

    • Les Morton

       … further pondering(s), Rubin was never one for being inventive anyway, he worked at Apple and is credited for ripping off the core ideas of the mobile OS in the first place. 

      He has made a career of copying others, the problem is that’s all he’s good for – it would appear.  So, he is still doing the same thing, ragging on an Apple game changer in October, and 5 months later he is now talking about how his product, a copy, is going to beat apple.

      LOL

      • Flyingmanjulio

        Les moron, you are an isheep and a fanboy.

  • Les Morton

    Interesting observation by someone who was at this Android event ….

    “BARCELONA, MOBILE WORLD CONGRESS 2012 — During his keynote speech on
    Tuesday, Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt said, seemingly with
    all seriousness, that someday, “there will be Android in every pocket.”

    For
    someone who has been prowling around Mobile World Congress for the past
    four days, it’s a statement that’s hard to react to without spraying
    crumbs. Schmidt couldn’t sound any more delusional if he were sealed up
    in a hermetic chamber with a scale-model of the Spruce Goose.

    The iPhone
    dominates Mobile World Congress. Google can’t even get an Android in
    every pocket at its own tradeshow.

    Mobile
    World Congress is by and large an Android-dominated show. Most of the
    phones shown here run on Android, as do most of the tablets, apps and
    even some of the laptops. Likewise, most of the people here are in the business of Android. In other words, the clear majority of people at Mobile World Congress owe their paychecks to the Android ecosystem.

    Yet
    look around you as you’re wandering around the tradefloor, and even
    though everyone here makes money off of Android, iPhones and iPads are
    everywhere. What Apple is going to do next is on everyone’s lips, and
    the iPad 3 invitation — sneakily arranged to go out while Schmidt was
    delivering his keynote — was the major topic of the third day
    of Mobile World Congress 2012. And it wasn’t just that people wanted to
    know what the iPad 3 meant for their next product, or their business? It
    was that people here just wanted one.

    Eric Schmidt seems
    to think that Android’s on the ascendency, that it’s on its way to
    ruling the world. What a joke. Google can’t even set the mobile agenda
    or get people interested in Android at a tradeshow dominated by people
    who owe their livelihoods to it. Instead, the hottest topic at Mobile
    World Congress 2012 is iOS, not Android. Android may very well be in
    most people’s pockets here, but it’s Apple who is in their hearts.”
     

    • kenyu73

      How many times did you copy and paste this “story” of your into other blogs? The iPhone is the Jitterbug of smartphones. People give iPhones to wifes and grandparents, but true engineers and technology focused people use Android. I expect Windows 8 to be more worry to Android then iOS. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Cun-Con/100000089993721 Cun Con

        You sound like a denial idiot. My girlfriend and I have been PC users for years and bashed Apple computers and products from day 1.You know what, a few years ago, we tried the first Apple product and guess what, we’re no longer using PC at home, but Macbook, iPod, iPhones and iPad. 
        Don’t ever say that iPhone’s for wife and grandfather. I’ve been a game programmer for EA on special effect for more than 15 years and my girlfriend’s been an application engineer for IBM for over 10 years. We can write codes for your life. So don’t even mention about technical geeks on Android and shttt. At the end of day, we want devices that are easy to use, intuitive, meets our needs at home and just works. Not everyone wants to tweak a device since we do that a lot at works every day. For that, Apple products win on every aspect.
        Not sure about other place, but here in Silicon Valley and SF Bay Area, iPhones are every where. Apple products crush all competitors here. I remember at our Superbowl party this year at my friend’s house, we put our phones on the table and iPhone:Android phone ratio was 17:2. Yes, beat that.

      • kenyu73

        Well, you got me there. Friends think alike, I can’t argue that. I bet the Apple event coming up will have a 1000:1 Apple to Android device ratio. 

        There’s a reason the DoD (Dept of Defense) choose Android and not Apple. Android is a device that’s expandable and robust whereas the iPhone is just another closed Apple product that is tailored to a growing minority of the smartphone user base.

        I’m not saying the iPhone is garbage, I’m just saying it’s hay-day is over. Android and Microsoft will battle over the top spot in the next 5 years and the iPhone will take its spot along side of the Mac (a good product with less user base).

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1679286526 Dan Sullivan

        Apple: Charging idiots 2000% of the products actual value since 1976.

    • Scottamac

      …….yawn, iphone is yesterdays technology nothing more, over-priced underpowerd ideas other companies have been doing for years.Google assistant been around way before iphone emerged.No ifs no buts Android/Google are the future of smart tech.Iphone is clearly showing its age as the biggest manufactures in the world release mutiple devices in an already competitive market and have the resources to invest in new and intuative designs/tech rather than rehash an old design time and time again,what are differences between iphone2 and iphone4s? afew new features better reception battery life abit quicker processor and what more apps available to use on same 3.5″ screen (and lets not mention the camera if u can call it that) please……yawn see what I mean! Other companies do it better much much better. Apples apparent popularity is survived by one thing and one thing only the company have branded their “iphone” as a “status” symbol meaning anyone even those who cannot afford one “must have one”.The “best” no not by a long way but mos” popular” certainly oh and yeh ive owned an iphone 4s verdict Over rated!

  • TechGuy21

    they have to follow everything apple does. 
    seriously why people keep trying to bring siri ish to android. 
    siri is already a failure
    stop copy apple. you making them more rich and popular like they already are.  

    • Twisted-metal

      Apple stole Google’s notification drawer, and a bunch of other things, so Google has the right to do so too. 

    • Uastupidhoe

      You did read the bit about android having voice actions before siri came about right?
      And please look at what os control’s the market, as i dont think they’re making them more rich.

    • Flyingmanjulio

      Android has had voice actions for a long time now, way before apple. This is not them copying, its just the next logical step. Dumbass

  • YNODEL

    Simple question. WILL THIS BE ON ANDROID JELLYBEAN OR AN UPDATE TO ICE CREAM SANDWICH?

  • http://www.mosaictec.com Mosaic Technology

    For this to be real competition to Apple’s Siri,
    Google’s voice assistant will not only need to be a comparable product, it will
    need to be better. If Google can create a product far superior to Siri, it will
    be a major selling point for Android phones, and drive competition for the next
    Apple product.

     

    Sarah

    Mosaic Technology

    http://www.mosaictec.com

  • TechGuyPA

    What makes Apple the front runner that it is deals with creating both the software and hardware. They are designed perfectly for each other. This is where Google and Android have to start working together. They will never catch Apple if this doesn’t come out before late 2012. With a new iPhone coming out over the summer it’s sure to have improvements made to Siri. By late 2012, millions of users will already have this next phase of Siri in their hands and possibly an update to the new iPad. Google and Android will have already lost because of Apple’s marketing geniuses. 

    P.S. Rumors of an Apple TV are speculating for 2012. I’m sure this will use voice control and Siri to sync and operate the devices. If Google Assistant launches after this release good luck of getting any sort of coverage. 

    I’m not saying Apple’s products on a side by side scale perform better to Android products…they have the edge with marketing and integration by far though.

  • Twisted-metal

    Apple is the real theif, stealing the notification drawer STRAIGHT from Android

  • Uastupidhoe

    Sounds like a bumlicking apple fan boy