Siri does not support Spanish, can't order you a margarita

If your native language is Spanish and you were wanting to get in on some Siri action when the iPhone 4S goes on sale, you may have to wait a little bit longer. First reports from the Siri application have been generally positive but it is now understood that the application will not work in Spanish, at least, not yet.

Fox News Latino is reporting that while the application will support English that is optimized for the US, UK and Australia, and will also support French and German, Spanish is currently not being offered. One possible reason why Spanish has not been implemented yet is because of the language's complexity. Fox News Latino states:

Spanish is a fairly difficult language to interpret for natural voice recognition since there are many variations which sound completely different to a voice recognition software.

While this could be the case, it could also have been Apple's decision to focus on perfecting a small subset of languages before expanding its offerings. Also, the application is currently in beta and could possibly support Spanish upon release.

While this lack of support may not affect many, if you were planning on using Siri in Spanish, you may have to think again.

 

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I don't understand how it can be more difficult to recognize Spanish than English. In Spanish all vowels sound the same, always, always, always no exceptions. The grammar is more complicated but still the rules are very organized and structured. There is even the "Royal Spanish Academy" which regulates the language.

There are different accents, different regions will pronounce the S,Z,LL,Y,C with slightly different sound but they are still the same basic sound.

It is like the difference of pronouncing Sheet and Cheat in English, the Cheat sound is stronger, like a short T at the beginning and the Sheet sound is more soft, like smoothly coming out of the mouth. Yet they have no problem programming it in the English Language.

I can understand the recognition engine having problems when you mix languages, as Spanish speaking people often do. In Spain for example they will say "Dame huevos con BACON" whereas in Puerto Rico they would say "dame huevos con tocineta" (give me eggs and bacon).

I could understand the engine interpreting BACON as beicon, which is a non existing Spanish word. Other than these issues it should be easier to recognize the Spanish.

Edited: Correct Typos

In Japan "Siri" means butt. I'm sure that makes a lot of people wanting to talk Japanese to their siri.

More to the point, I'd be willing to bet Spanish and Portuguese will be among the first other languages to be added to this platform, while really tiny languages like Norwegian, and Swedish will probably be at the end of Apple's list of languages to support.

KingCrimson said,
Once again, MSFT leads the way in bringing computing to the MASSES, while Apple is for the moneyed elites.
You saying Spanish people have no money while English speaking do...

KingCrimson said,
Once again, MSFT leads the way in bringing computing to the MASSES, while Apple is for the moneyed elites.
I guess that's why so many of Bing's services are still only offered in the US.

KingCrimson said,
Once again, MSFT leads the way in bringing computing to the MASSES, while Apple is for the moneyed elites.

Oh, so that's why most versions of Windows support so many languages out of the box while OS X only supports a couple?

Oh, wait, that's not right, it is the other way around (unless you buy the Ultimate version of Windows).

And while we are on the subject, how many languages does WP7 support and how many does iOS support?

KingCrimson said,
Once again, MSFT leads the way in bringing computing to the MASSES, while Apple is for the moneyed elites.

If there ever was a comment that deserved a "facepalm", this is it. *facepalm*

I don't know why Neowin bothered to follow up this "news piece" from Fox News Latino. Apple revealed the languages that they would initially support when they announced Siri. They had a whole slide dedicated to this (if I remember correctly). As others have said, Spanish isn't the only missing language and Apple will most likely incorporate these other languages into Siri over time.

roadwarrior said,

Oh, wait, that's not right, it is the other way around (unless you buy the Ultimate version of Windows).

Actually Windows supports all the languages by default (you select it in your installation). Ultimate / Enterprise however allows you to change it on the fly.

And while we are on the subject, how many languages does WP7 support and how many does iOS support?

I'm not sure how many languages iOS supports, but Mango has support for 24 languages (more if you include dialects).

Manish said,

If there ever was a comment that deserved a "facepalm", this is it. *facepalm*

I don't know why Neowin bothered to follow up this "news piece" from Fox News Latino. Apple revealed the languages that they would initially support when they announced Siri. They had a whole slide dedicated to this (if I remember correctly). As others have said, Spanish isn't the only missing language and Apple will most likely incorporate these other languages into Siri over time.

Yeah, I really don't know why too...

And if they shipped it with Spanish support that didn't work well or only worked for certain dialects/regions then everyone would complain about that.

"but it is now understood that the application will not work in Spanish"

Uhhh, yeah, we knew that it would only support English, French, and German when they announced it. As another poster above pointed out, there are countless other languages that aren't supported as well. Why does this article make a special case out of Spanish?

I'd guess it's because spanish is one of those languages everything just have to be localized for it seems, so when it's not there you got a lot of people whining because of it...

vanx said,
And French is easy? Zut alors!

Actually, it is. Thanks to their stupid French language academy that restricts the evolution of the language, it's kept it very simple. French doesn't have many words.

Meph said,

Actually, it is. Thanks to their stupid French language academy that restricts the evolution of the language, it's kept it very simple. French doesn't have many words.
Is that why I was told by a French man that French is more conservative in Canada that France. Makes one wonder.

Is it a surprise?! Apple told Siri will work in English (including UK/Australia), French and German for now...

people just need to stop criticizing tech when it doesn't come out of the box on first release not supporting the entire world.... Kinect was poked at for voice rec, like only supporting American and UK english and not austrailian due to accent differences.... now this with spanish.... software takes time to perfect! businesses cant wait for it to be perfect before shipping, or you'd go broke

Brandon said,
No Problemo. Habla Ingles!

Nahh, only around 340 million potential customers who might not use the product

omnicoder said,

You mean Hablo ingles?

Since we are correcting Spanish then:

You mean "No hay problema, yo hablo inglés"

Kinect was criticized for only supporting English, Japanese, and (Mexican) Spanish. Can't wait until it is explained to me how it is OK for Apple's little Suri Cruse to ignore all Spanish speaking people, all 400Million of them.

nohone said,
Kinect was criticized for only supporting English, Japanese, and (Mexican) Spanish. Can't wait until it is explained to me how it is OK for Apple's little Suri Cruse to ignore all Spanish speaking people, all 400Million of them.
It was?

Anyway, both platforms can be updated with new software. Apple has committed to add new languages as it comes out of beta for siri.

nohone said,
Kinect was criticized for only supporting English, Japanese, and (Mexican) Spanish. Can't wait until it is explained to me how it is OK for Apple's little Suri Cruse to ignore all Spanish speaking people, all 400Million of them.

First, it's 500 Million. Second, they're also "ignoring" 300 Million Portuguese speakers, well over 200 Million Hindi speakers (Wikipedia doesn't have recent numbers for this, but I suspect they're much more), 1,3 BILLION Chinese speakers, not to mention a lot of other languages. My point? They're not specifically ignoring Spanish speakers.

If I recall correctly, there was a beta tag somewhere in Siri's presentation slides. Anyone with more than 2 brain cells should have figured out by now that other languages will be "unignored" soon.

fsX said,

First, it's 500 Million. Second, they're also "ignoring" 300 Million Portuguese speakers, well over 200 Million Hindi speakers (Wikipedia doesn't have recent numbers for this, but I suspect they're much more), 1,3 BILLION Chinese speakers, not to mention a lot of other languages. My point? They're not specifically ignoring Spanish speakers.

If I recall correctly, there was a beta tag somewhere in Siri's presentation slides. Anyone with more than 2 brain cells should have figured out by now that other languages will be "unignored" soon.

From the Spanish Wikipedia article:
First language 329 million to 400 million.
500 million as first or second language.

Really, you are using the beta "tag" as a defense? How about they actually finish the software before putting it on the phone and shipping it to paying customers, turning them into glorified beta testers?

But I guess they needed to have something in there to get people to buy their new device.

nohone said,

Really, you are using the beta "tag" as a defense? How about they actually finish the software before putting it on the phone and shipping it to paying customers, turning them into glorified beta testers?

Doesn't seem to do Google any harm...

nohone said,

Really, you are using the beta "tag" as a defense? How about they actually finish the software before putting it on the phone and shipping it

Quite frankly he shouldn't even have to use that, a service has to start somewhere right? It supports English, German and French, that's three major languages, spanning is probably coming down the line (as noted it's much harder to interpret for a computer).
They could have launcher with just English ignoring the rest of the world if they wanted...

evo_spook said,

Doesn't seem to do Google any harm...

For years MS was criticized for supposedly releasing beta quality software as production. I guess in the new world, Apple, Google, etc. doing it is perfectly fine. But MS is still evil for doing it, right?

nohone said,

But MS is still evil for doing it, right?

I'd lay off the drugs if I was you, the only person making wild claims is yourself, no ones mentioned MS.

nohone said,
Kinect was criticized for only supporting English, Japanese, and (Mexican) Spanish. Can't wait until it is explained to me how it is OK for Apple's little Suri Cruse to ignore all Spanish speaking people, all 400Million of them.

It was? Never heard anything about it. Not that I care if Kinect supports Spanish or not anyway lol It supports english that's all I care about.

Vice said,

It was? Never heard anything about it. Not that I care if Kinect supports Spanish or not anyway lol It supports english that's all I care about.

There is a comment just below mine that said the same thing. Search the web, you will see people mocking the Kinect for not supporting all the languages (and then there is the all too common complaint about MS products being US focused).

evo_spook said,

I'd lay off the drugs if I was you, the only person making wild claims is yourself, no ones mentioned MS.

I laugh when I read these. Somehow, the history of the past 10 years is ignored. The pure hatred of anything Microsoft from many Apple fans (not all, but many) was suddenly forgotten. As if it were magically wiped from the minds of the entire collective of humanity. The history has been rewritten so Apple fans showed nothing but friendship and love towards their PC counterparts.

And now, when PC users point out the flaws, the problems with Apple product (even from people who have experienced these problems first hand, such as myself) the Apple fans are taken aback. How dare you criticize? "Rememberance" of how PC users were treated is drug fuled insanity, or simply, from haters. Even something as far back as a year, such as the criticism for the Kinect, has been forgotten. The achievements it produced are mocked and scuttled for the brilliance of the shiny Apple.

Perhaps you should perform a simple search using Goolge. Or perhaps you should use Bing, the one I used, because it actually returned comments that were mocking the Kinect for these very things. Of course, you will not. Too much work to do to spit polish that Apple and defend it against the people who need to lay off the drugs.

nohone said,

From the Spanish Wikipedia article:
First language 329 million to 400 million.
500 million as first or second language.

Really, you are using the beta "tag" as a defense? How about they actually finish the software before putting it on the phone and shipping it to paying customers, turning them into glorified beta testers?

But I guess they needed to have something in there to get people to buy their new device.


So 75% of America should wait longer for an extra part of the software they're not even going to use? Don't think so.

nohone said,

I laugh when I read these. Somehow, the history of the past 10 years is ignored. The pure hatred of anything Microsoft from many Apple fans (not all, but many) was suddenly forgotten. As if it were magically wiped from the minds of the entire collective of humanity. The history has been rewritten so Apple fans showed nothing but friendship and love towards their PC counterparts.

And now, when PC users point out the flaws, the problems with Apple product (even from people who have experienced these problems first hand, such as myself) the Apple fans are taken aback. How dare you criticize? "Rememberance" of how PC users were treated is drug fuled insanity, or simply, from haters. Even something as far back as a year, such as the criticism for the Kinect, has been forgotten. The achievements it produced are mocked and scuttled for the brilliance of the shiny Apple.

Perhaps you should perform a simple search using Goolge. Or perhaps you should use Bing, the one I used, because it actually returned comments that were mocking the Kinect for these very things. Of course, you will not. Too much work to do to spit polish that Apple and defend it against the people who need to lay off the drugs.

I think you need to stand back and take a neutral clear look, both pc and apple fanboys are and were as bad as each, to try and make one is guilty and the other innocent is showing incredible lack of vision to try and wipe out a partnership of mutual arguing and fights, all I can say is get grip.

nohone said,

I laugh when I read these. Somehow, the history of the past 10 years is ignored. The pure hatred of anything Microsoft from many Apple fans (not all, but many) was suddenly forgotten. As if it were magically wiped from the minds of the entire collective of humanity. The history has been rewritten so Apple fans showed nothing but friendship and love towards their PC counterparts.

And now, when PC users point out the flaws, the problems with Apple product (even from people who have experienced these problems first hand, such as myself) the Apple fans are taken aback. How dare you criticize? "Rememberance" of how PC users were treated is drug fuled insanity, or simply, from haters. Even something as far back as a year, such as the criticism for the Kinect, has been forgotten. The achievements it produced are mocked and scuttled for the brilliance of the shiny Apple.

Perhaps you should perform a simple search using Goolge. Or perhaps you should use Bing, the one I used, because it actually returned comments that were mocking the Kinect for these very things. Of course, you will not. Too much work to do to spit polish that Apple and defend it against the people who need to lay off the drugs.

Hmm, ok. So let's be clear here. There were unfounded criticisms of how the Kinect's lack of language support meant it would never take off. And that as a result it shouldn't be released, and that it isn't going to have an impact.

Now that the Kinect is an enormous success, those criticisms are all, for the most part, moot.

So if I'm hearing you right... Siri deserves the very same criticisms that turned out to be completely and utterly foolish? You're saying that you want to be able to make a fool of yourself, like all those "Apple fanboys" did for a Microsoft product?

If that's the case, that's fine... but that's also absolutely ridiculous.