Why Siri won't kill Google Search.

So, TechCrunch is at it again, as usual, this time running a guest article by a guy who was an investor in Nuance and Siri, explaining how, surprise, surprise, Siri is going to kill Google Search.

The main argument is, Siri's user interface doesn't return 10 blue links, it returns an answer, and one without an ad, and this will be devastating to Google's business. There are so many things wrong with this argument, it's hard to decide where to begin.

1. Only 9% of searches are mobile, and even in the most optimistic estimates, it only raises to 20%.
2. Apple only has half the smartphone market, and their share is shrinking compared to Android. So, at best, they have control over 5-10% of Google's search traffic.
3. Siri is iOS only
4. Siri is just a user interface, it has no databases of its own at the moment. History is littered with search-engine metacrawlers. Siri can't answer queries without Yelp, Wolfram, Bing or Google, so unless Apple builds their own search engine, they will have to pay Bing or Google for those searches.
5. Siri is based on publically funded research through DARPA/SRI via CALO, so how defensible is its technological moat really? Much of the research is published.
6. Both Google and Microsoft have their own machine learning and voice expertise and are no slouches in this area. Unless Siri has some super general patent to troll with, it doesn't seem likely they'll maintain a lead.
7. Desktops/Notebooks are not going away, reports of death greatly exaggerated.

I'm not bashing Siri itself, I think it will evolve, and search interfaces will gain better natural language processing over time, but the idea that a device with a small share of overall search traffic with a proprietary interface is going to kill all the other search engines is ridiculous, if for no other reason, than Siri itself can't work without search engine backends.
Shared publiclyView activity