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Talking to Siri: India local search hacks (With bonus NZ goodness)

If you live in India and ask Siri to find you a restaurant, you may be disappointed. Siri isn't set up to provide local business searches in non-supported locales. Here's what normally happens in this case. Siri replies, "Sorry, I can't look for restaurants in India."

Talking to Siri India local search hacks

Today, Claudia Ramirez over at Fueled dropped me a note. One of their team members found a, well, it's not exactly an Easter Egg, it's more of a bug, but a really cool one.

After asking "What is the distance between India and restaurants", Siri responded with a local restaurant search. She writes, "This isn't a jailbroken iPad. It is currently running iOS 6. What this tell us is that Siri is well capable of performing location based searches in India and other countries, but it is not doing that for some reason. Maybe we are going to see an update soon?"

The screenshot you see above is courtesy of TUAW reader Harshal Dubli. He and reader Akshay Mehta independently tested this for TUAW and helped confirmed this search behavior in other areas of India.

Dubli writes, "It initially displayed the restaurant listing in New Delhi , Capitol of India, but I am in city called Pune, which is around 1,174 Kms way." Over time, Siri did start returning closer results for him.

Turn-by-turn directions did not work. He adds, "After tapping, it does start the map app, but in the end says , 'Sorry, directions to this place doesn't exists.'"

I tested the same queries in Denver. What I found was this: asking Siri the distance question produced an old-style display of nearby restaurants, which you can see in the gallery that follows. Saying "I'm hungry" or "Show me restaurants" produced an updated iOS 6-style result instead.

Is this bug/Easter Egg useful? For most people it won't be. Once this post goes live, Apple will probably fix it on their servers, so we don't expect it to last long. If you do give it a whirl, let us know the results in the comments. We're getting some promising results in New Zealand as well, but more about that later.

Update: As promised, New Zealand

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