Personal assistants like Amazon Alexa, and Siri have grown huge in recent years. They are not only found on the respective smart home speakers, but also on devices such as phones and tablets - each one has its own strengths and functions. But which is the best personal assistant out there and which one will best suit your needs?
Alexa or Siri?
Amazon put Alexa on the original Echo speaker in 2014, but since then the Echo devices available have grown rapidly, which Alexa has seen in millions of households around the world. Like the Google Assistant, Alexa performs various tasks for you and controls various systems. The wake word "Alexa" is more personal than "Hey Google" or "Hey Siri".
Like the Google Assistant, Alexa controls compatible smart home devices, controls music, runs timers, reminders and alarms, finds information online, plays content on an Amazon Fire device, reads messages, offers Alexa calls and much more. Where Alexa has a distinct advantage over the other personal assistants is its compatibility with apps and services, with a huge list longer than either Google or Apple, even if they are catching up quickly.
You can find Alexa on a slew of devices - not just the multitude of Echo speakers and devices available - but also third-party speakers, Fire devices, some Fitbit devices, and even some cars. Amazon has even put Alexa in a microwave, teddy bear, and clock in the past.
Siri is the oldest of the personal assistants and probably the funniest too.
Apple first offered Siri as a standalone app in the App Store in 2010 but has been firmly integrated into the company's iOS software since 2011 after Apple took over the company behind it. As with the Google Assistant and Alexa, Siri will perform a variety of tasks for you and pull information from various Apple services to give you a more personalized experience. It is also funny (which the others lack) and allows the use of natural language.
Siri controls compatible smart home devices, opens apps, calls someone in your contacts or sends them an SMS, sets reminders and alarms, finds information online, makes recommendations, tells jokes and much more.
The main difference between Siri and Google Assistant and Alexa is that Siri is only available on Apple devices. You can find Siri on iPhones, iPads, Apple Watch, AirPods, MacBooks, iMacs, the HomePod speaker, and all cars that have Apple CarPlay built into them. However, this also requires an iOS device.
Which personal assistant is the best? As always with these things, there is no easy answer, and it depends on what you are looking for to suit your needs.
Amazon Alexa its compatible with hundreds of thousands of services and apps. The Alexa Wake Word is personal and customizable and has features like Alexa Calling.
Apple's Siri is by far the funniest of the personal assistants that you can talk to most naturally. It has features like Siri shortcuts that allow you to get things done quickly and easily. However, it is tied to Apple devices and offers less compatibility with apps and services compared to Alexa.
Each personal assistant has its advantages and disadvantages. If you want the greatest possible compatibility with apps and services, you need a device with Alexa. If you want the funniest, you want an Apple device for Siri.
If you have an Android or iOS phone, you can download the Alexa app from the App Store or Google Play Store. As mentioned earlier, Siri is only available to Apple users. So, if you have an Apple device, pretty much you can have your cake and eat it.