Published On: Tue, May 10th, 2016

Make way for Viv, the New Virtual Assistant from Creators of Siri

Siri changed our outlook towards virtual assistants and its cohesion with iPhones is something alluring to say the least. However, years after its introduction, Siri continues to remain extremely basic— pleasing only a few at this point of time. It is more of a historical virtual assistant, capable of managing some of the very specific jobs.

Moreover, Siri isn’t comfortable with myriad third-party services— who are looking to make incessant modifications, every now and then. Amidst the furor, comes Viv— the next gen virtual assistant, from the makers of Siri. Viv, as demonstrated at TechCrunch Disrupt is a capable entity which takes the concept of mobile computing and virtual assistants to a whole new level.

Dag Kittlaus, Co-Founder, Siri believes Viv will use a technology, capable enough to inject life into devices and inanimate entities, via conversations. Viv stands for life in Latin and is expected to revive Artificial Intelligence akin ‘Her’— the movie which changed our mindset regarding modern technology.

photo/ Pixabay

photo/ Pixabay

Kittlaus asked Viv, “Will it be warmer than 70 degrees near the Golden Gate Bridge, after 5pm, the day after tomorrow?”  To this Viv was extremely specific, retrieved forecasts from the weather app and answered, “No, it won’t be that warm”. On being asked the same, Siri pulled up daily forecast for the upcoming week but didn’t answer the question directly.

Viv, on the other hand doesn’t offer a virtual tone as of now but Kittlaus is pretty optimistic regarding the same and expects modifications, in near future. That said, even without verbal response, Viv is still amazing for its ability to bring out the most specific bits of information.

Viv’s reliance on speech recognition technology is synonymous to that of Siri and other diction solutions. However, this new version of virtual assistant strikes a perfect balance between the ‘dynamic program generation’ and ‘natural language technology’— capable of determining the intent of speech. The former is a patent-pending feature and clearly describes Viv’s capability to address its own coding and programming.

The previously asked question is a prime example as Viv understood the intent and programmed itself accordingly. Here is a software that is capable of writing itself. Unlike other apps for PC and mobiles, Viv is expected to be a self-learning assistant with myriad applications buzzing underneath. That said, scaling the assistant with hard coding is necessary at the start and then the app is going to lay out the subsequent things, in future.

Viv integrates a 44-step code in a matter of 10 milliseconds. According to Kittlaus, Viv can be great at transactions and shopping as the built-in applications with this virtual assistant will pop up on addressing the intent of speech. Ask a question and Viv responds with a step that is in sync with the requirements. Moreover, Kittlaus booked Uber onstage and even a room in ‘Palm Springs’— only to cancel them within minutes. These options are slightly superior than what Siri could ever provide but seeing the potential, we might soon arrive at the world of infinite possibilities.

Conversational computing like this has been on the priority list of tech giants like Microsoft and Facebook, via the chat bots. But Viv is different for its positioning as the virtual assistant which is personalized and can dominate other apps (along with the chat bots).

There might not be any more demo in days to come and we have to wait for at least a few months before anything concrete is revealed regarding the launch date or other tweaks.

Guest Author: Richard Smith

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