Revisiting Evi Voice Recognition Technology for iPhone

The mobile application Evi, priced at $0.99, serves as an alternative to Siri for users without access to an iPhone 4S, offering similar voice-controlled functionalities.

My initial experience with Evi was less than stellar, as detailed in a review that described it as a complete disaster. However, after the developers increased server capacity, the app’s performance improved significantly, with only occasional unavailability.

Now functioning properly, Evi has shown its strengths in certain areas. For instance, when inquiring about the Chancellor of Germany, Evi not only provided the correct answer but also displayed relevant images, an enhancement over Siri’s text-only response.

Querying the best hamburger spots in Omaha led Evi to direct me to an Urban Spoon page, whereas Siri used Yelp reviews to suggest options.

Although Siri’s method was more straightforward, Evi’s built-in web browser is a convenient feature.

However, Evi falls short in delivering weather updates. When asked about the weather in Phoenix, it merely suggested visiting the National Weather Service Web Page, whereas Siri provided a direct answer using the iPhone’s weather app.

Evi excels in parsing complex questions, such as comparing ages between Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, providing direct and accurate answers. In contrast, Siri redirects users to a Wolfram Alpha page where users must find the information themselves.

Both Evi and Siri utilize Nuance for speech recognition, which performs admirably on both platforms.

Despite its rocky start, Evi has seen a turnaround in user reviews following improvements.

For those with older iPhone models capable of running iOS4 or later, Evi now represents a solid choice. It lacks some of Siri’s integrations like calendar management and reminders but excels in answering queries. For iPhone 4S owners, the modest investment in Evi might still be justified due to its unique strengths.

As both apps continue to evolve, with Siri still officially in beta and experiencing occasional server issues, revisiting Evi might be worthwhile.

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Donald is a dedicated writer for TUAW, bringing readers the latest insights and updates on all things Apple. With a keen eye for detail and a love for technology, Donald covers everything from the newest iPhone releases to the latest macOS updates. His articles are known for their clarity and depth, making complex topics accessible to all. When he’s not writing, Donald enjoys exploring the capabilities of his MacBook Pro and capturing moments with his iPhone camera.