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Amazon Acquires Siri-Challenger 'Evi' for $26 Million?

TechCrunch is reporting that Amazon has acquired Evi, a natural language search platform that is similar to Apple's Siri, for $26 million. The Evi app was originally posted on the App Store but Apple had threatened to remove because of similarities to Siri, but later said it would "work with" the company to reduce similarities. Evi remains available on the App Store.
TechCrunch understands from sources that the company has been sold to Amazon for $26 million. However, calls to Amazon PR, backers Octopus Ventures and the founders of Evi have ben met with a stoney silence. A spokesperson for Octopus told us: “On this occasion Octopus will decline to comment on this specific portfolio company”.

True Knowledge, the company behind Evi, licensed the same Nuance voice recognition technology that Apple uses in Siri and offers an array of information that seems to compare favorably to Siri's abilities. Evi first launched in early 2012.

Amazon has a number of possible uses for Evi, including building the service into its Kindle Fire tablet, or a possible Amazon phone.


Evi is a free download for the iPhone. [Direct Link]

Top Rated Comments

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13 months ago
Most people I know including myself just use Siri for the first day or so.
Rating: 26 Positives
13 months ago
Hopefully that means Apple will step up their game with Siri. It is cumbersome and frustrating. Especially when you "call home" and it thinks for two minutes.
Rating: 20 Positives
13 months ago
lol i forgot i had siri on my iphone and im not kidding
Rating: 12 Positives
13 months ago
Remember all, Siri is still in "beta"! :rolleyes:
Rating: 12 Positives
13 months ago

Most people I know including myself just use Siri for the first day or so.


I tried it out a few times turned it off after the first day tho.
Rating: 7 Positives
13 months ago
I like Google voice searching on my iPhone. She's faster, more accurate, and doesn't sound like she's been smoking cigarettes for 20 years.

I'd love for Apple to get serious about Siri or allow us to choose a voice search for our phone like we can choose a default browser/mail client on our Macs. Ditto for maps.
Rating: 7 Positives
13 months ago

It's useless because you don't use it? Interesting logic. :rolleyes:


it's useless because the voice recognition is very poor compared to google voice.

google voice is instant.

siri is balls slow and confused often. :rolleyes:
Rating: 6 Positives
13 months ago

You can improve this by entering phonetic data in Contacts on your iPhone. Edit a contact and choose Add Field... It can make Siri much more useful.


Beware of a ridiculous bug that has existed for a long time with this. Phonetic names change the alphabetizing in contacts. My sister's last name is Jaca. When I put in Haka as a phonetic pronunciation, it moves her contact down into the H area. How stupid is that?
Rating: 6 Positives
13 months ago
I wonder if we are getting to a point where companies will soon out-Apple Apple. Most of Apple's newer features have been a dime short of awesome and competitors are coming to close that gap.
Rating: 6 Positives
13 months ago
That Siri license has to expire sometime. Hence the paultry $23m purchase price. This is a "bridge event" purchase by Amazon. Clearly all Apple competitors agree Siri was a coup.

I wonder if Nuance, which is independent of Apple has some contract with Apple after the failed acquisition effort which is both long term and binding?

Rocketman

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Most people I know including myself just use Siri for the first day or so.

Me too, but for a visually challenged friend, it changed her entire life. It is a matter of adjusting behavior to benefit from "eyes free' activity.

Siri is like your pet cat. It trains you.

Rocketman
Rating: 4 Positives

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