A quick note on Steve’s passing… I cannot add to all that has been written, but the greatest thing about Jobs is that not only he understood technology but he also understood products. He understood that a consumer makes a choice on a product or service by what he sees, experiences, touches and most importantly by what he feels… Based on that understanding of the consumer, he was able to reinvent decadent value chains into profitable ones – product manager in God Mode.
Siri will be yet another feather in the man’s cap. I have not used Siri much, but have seen it used extensively by my wife. What is so interesting about it is that it is not a search app, it is an artificially intelligent interface to a bunch of apps including search. That distinction is important in understanding how Apple has positioned Siri – as an interface. It is almost like voice is the new touch…. And to ease the pain of adoption (in a way that only Apple can) it has made Siri fun and funny; compare those responses by Siri to the training passages of Dragon Naturally Speaking. With an incremental (some say disappointing) update to the iPhone Apple has made voice recognition and artificial intelligence mainstream.
Siri comes with a very rare (for Apple) beta label… Maybe the only way Apple can perfect this one is by putting it out there… and as it improves and hopefully has an API for, we will see the “insanely great” happen all over again.