The often frustrating and cheeky Siri has a competitor nipping at her heels. Amazon’s Alexa has joined the virtual personal assistant realm and is now able to live in iOS. The Alexa app was available on the Apple app store but now it is a quick two taps away, essentially neighbors with Siri. Within the Amazon app, which is wildly popular, Alexa is accessible and ready to answer your beck and call. Alexa is usually paired only with the Amazon Echo but with her transition onto millions of iPhones it’s likely she’ll outshine her predecessor. Alexa is in the process of being incorporated into more and more smart devices (like LG’s smart refrigerator) and ready to push Siri out of her own ecosystem.
Alexa has over 10,000 integrations, or skills, that assist the user with things like revealing Amazon deals, summoning Uber or Lyft rides, texting friends, ordering pizza from Domino’s, playing music (Echo’s main feature obviously), and tuning your guitar .. among (literally) thousands of other things. Although Siri can do almost the same tasks, Alexa can hear better (from across the room, how many times has Siri completely misheard questions?) and is more accessible on more platforms (Echo, Fire TV, and others not tethered to Amazon as Siri is to Apple).
Surprisingly, Apple has allowed this infiltration of Alexa onto iOS. As Wired writer, Brian Barrett, phrased it, the Amazon app is now a “Trojan horse” for Alexa to invade Siri’s home turf. As Alexa continues to evolve, Siri will need to step up her game if she wants to continue her reign as top virtual assistant.