Google's Taking Siri Head-On, On the iPhone

By Sam Gibbs on at

The battle for the voice assistant crown is raging, and now Google's gone and crossed over behind enemy lines. It's doing what Apple can't, bringing its voice searching tech from Jelly Bean and shoving it into its iPhone search app. This is Google Voice Search, just on the iPhone and iPad, and it's launching on iOS before most Android phones get it too.

Google's obviously worried that Siri will take away one of its most profitable revenue streams. Whatever you think about the so-called war between Google and Apple right now, iOS remains an extremely important part of Google's coffer-lining -- being the default search engine on a closed platform brings in the dosh, whichever way you look at it.

With Siri, there's a possibility that iPhone and iPad users won't rely so much on Google's search, therefore reducing its iOS revenue stream. It makes total sense, then, that Google would want to combat Siri, like-for-like, on Apple's platform too, not just on Android. The app was shown off yesterday at a Google showcase and should be available any time now.

I've used Google's search app on the iPhone, and frankly, it's just been faster to nip into mobile Safari, or Chrome for that matter, and type in the search manually. But if Google plonks all its awesome voice tech from Jelly Bean into it, maybe it'll finally be worth using. In fact, considering Siri on iOS 5 is basically useless in the UK, this might actually be the voice search iPhone users have been craving -- could it be Google that goes ahead and fixes Apple's broken promise for it? It really might. Now, if Google could somehow shoehorn Google Now in there somewhere too, that'd be truly awesome. [GoogleReuters]