As noted by Phillip Elmer-DeWitt at Fortune, Apple analyst Gene Munster published a note to clients today that contained the results of a Siri vs. Google search 1600-question showdown.
While it is not exactly a test of how well the companies’ various voice services stack up against one another (since Google Search queries were typed-in and not spoken), but it is a good indication of just how viable Siri is as an everyday mobile search product and alternative to Google. In the test, both Google and Siri were asked 800 questions in a quiet location. Another 800 questions were asked among the loud street traffic in Minneapolis. The results, according to Fortune:
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-Google understands 100 percent of the questions (not surprisingly, since they are keyed in)
-Google replies accurately 86 percent of the time
-Siri comprehends 83 percent of queries in noisy conditions; 89 percent in a quiet room
-Siri answers accurately 62 percent of the time on the street; 68 percent in a quiet room.
According to DeWitt, Munster estimated that Siri is “more than two years behind Google in its learning curve.” The report continued to break down the percentage of search results in Siri that rely on Google, and it noted, “With the iOS 6 release in the fall, we expect Siri to improve meaningfully while reducing its reliance on Google from 60% to 48%”:
Currently Siri gets 60% of its answers from Google, 20% from Yelp, 14% from WolframAlpha, 4% from Yahoo and 2% from Wikipedia… “Breaking down Siri’s reliance further,” Munster writes, “Google provides 100% of navigation results, 61% of information results, 48% of commerce results and 42% of local results. Among other result aggregators, Yelp provided the most local results (51%) and commerce results (51%), while WolframAlpha provided 34% of information results.”
Technobuffalo also tested the two in the video above using voice for both.