Yahoo may be trying to build a Siri and Google Now killer (updated)

Update 7:10PM ET: Sources close to Yahoo have informed The Verge that the video below is fake and not produced by the company.

Yahoo may be working on its own voice-based personal assistant to rival Apple's Siri and Google Now. A video has recently surfaced that shows the unreleased app running on an Android smartphone. The origins of the clip are unclear, though it may have been developed for internal purposes. In the video, we see the Android device mounted in a car. The driver turns on the engine, and without any voice prompts (or forward movement), the app recognizes that he's headed to the office.

Soon thereafter, it provides a traffic update and warns of delays ahead. From here, the driver — whose voice bears an eerie resemblance to Tom Hardy's Bane character — dictates a text message to a co-worker noting that he'll be late. The UI and execution seen in the clip are largely standard fare, though Yahoo's assistant is smart enough to go back and make a message adjustment when he says "change 30 minutes to 40 minutes." Another image of the app reveals that it can make local dining recommendations, which again is something that Yahoo's competitors have long offered.

Interestingly, Yahoo's assistant appears to be running on top of the regular Android OS, much like Facebook's Chat Heads and Skype's recently updated tablet app. When contacted to verify the video's authenticity, Yahoo said that it does not comment on rumors or speculation. That doesn't give us much to go on, but if Google Now and Siri have fallen short of your expectations, another choice may be on the horizon.

The Verge
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