It might not score any points in the personality department, but if it works, who’s going to complain?
And Maluuba, which is being tabbed as a Siri competitor, really does score a zero in personality – there’ll be no clever quips and retorts. In fact, there won’t be any audio retorts at all – Maluuba is only interested in getting you information, and packaging it in a way that is quickly and easily digestible.
Maluuba understands natural speech, which is to say that it understands natural speech some of the time. That said, early reviews have been positive, suggesting that at the very worst, Maluuba is on par with what Siri is capable of (not that that’s necessarily a compliment).
Once you get past the lack of snark, you’ll see that Maluuba and Siri aren’t all that different. Both use APIs from popular sites like Wikipedia, Yelp, and Wolfram Alpha to provide the information being sought. You can ask for information about the weather, local events, or check your own calendar, and the app includes an extensive help section outlining what Maluuba is presently capable of finding. App launching is also a go.
Maluuba is well integrated with Google Calendar, too, and acts as a real personal assistant – it’s a centralized place where you can check messages, your calendar – basically, your life as stored on your smartphone. You can program reminders and alerts through the app, too.
Maluuba (subtitled “Your Siri Alternative” in case there was any doubt about intentions) is available now on Google Play for free.