Apple wasn’t the only one to realise the true potential of Siri while it was in its early stages. According to The Huffington Post, in the fall of 2009, before Siri was acquired by Apple, Verizon had struck a deal with the startup to preinstall the virtual assistant in all of its Android phones to be introduced later that year.
The deal was of course nixed once Apple came into the picture and successfully managed to acquire the startup, but not before Verizon had already shot commercials highlighting Siri as one of the prime features of its Android phones.
The BlackBerry and Android versions of Siri that were in the works back then also got scrapped along with the Verizon deal, since Apple, as you’d expect, wanted Siri to be an iOS exclusive. Once Siri was integrated into iPhone 4S, Apple even pulled the iOS version of the app from the App Store.
The piece additionally highlights how the App Store version of Siri, in certain aspects, was way more capable that its iOS-integrated avatar. By hooking into more than 40 web services, Siri was able to perform tasks like summoning a cab, buying movie tickets or reserving a table at a restaurant. Apple also cleaned up Siri’s vocabulary and toned down its character before integrating it into iOS.
While recent additions to Siri now let users tell the virtual assistant to reserve tables in a restaurant, other areas still remain ignored. With two out of Siri’s three co-founders and iOS lead Scott Forstall gone, Apple has an uphill task to beef up Siri’s feature set to better compete with similar offerings by Google and other Siri-like startups.