There is now concrete evidence that Google Now is a better assistant than Siri. An experiment has shown that Google Now had the edge over Siri by answering 86% of all the questions heard correctly compared to the 84% by Siri.
Gene Munster, an analyst of Piper Jaffray conducted a side-by-side comparison between Apple’s Siri and Google Now. With 800 questions being thrown at the two voice assistants, half of which were carried out outdoors and the other half indoors. The question were centred on five categories – local information, commerce, navigation, general information, and OS commands.
It was calculated that Siri uses Google’s database to answer 3% of all questions compared to 27% from a previous analysis in December 2012 by Munster. Instead of Google, Siri used Bing as a default search engine and Apple Maps for navigation queries. Only 4% of the questions were answered by Siri alone.
“We believe Siri will continue increasing the number of queries it can answer without consulting outside sources,” said Munster. He added that this is important as users would be more likely to simply use Google or other search engine if Siri consistently directs them away from itself.
It is not all bad for Siri as it did well in the competition by gathering data from multiple sources and arranging results based on rating or distance. Siri has improved with a grade of B- as compared to a C+ from the previous competition.
The new test demonstrated Google Now’s ability to pull off a better navigation searches, along with local and general information. Siri on the other hand had the lead at interpreting OS commands such as a request to play a song.
For the final result, Google took a grade of B, triumphing over Siri. Munster claims that Google will further improve at interpreting OS commands in conjunction with the release of voice compatible devices such as the Google Wear watches and the Moto X.