Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) may have been shut out from including its Maps app on the iOS 6 platform when the iPhone 5 was first launched – though it did get some love in the App Store a little while later – and has gotten the upper PR hand in that area, Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) has been able to move into a different area to enhance its Google Search app on Apple smartphones and tablets. And it could mean trouble for Siri, the loyal Apple voice assistant.
Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) announced on its company blog that it has established an “enhanced” Google Search app for iPads and iPhones, which is designed to help users with their Google Search results. Android phones running versions 4.1 Jelly Bean or later already have access to the new voice capability, and the app works on all Apple (AAPL) devices running OS 4.3 or later, including the latest iPhone 5 and current iPad devices.
The new app recognizes voice and written commands and can provide results faster than what might be found in a browser. But, as it is not a native app on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), it does lack some services that Siri can provide – such as the ability to post to Facebook and Twitter and the ability to reach contact. While the Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) Search app can be very effective with voice requests like Siri in terms of search, it seems to be better for Web-based searches like locations and directions and not so much as an interactive or collaborative service.
Siri has had its detractors, but also its supporters. Can Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) leverage is superior Search to draw some new fans to its voice app. With Google Search supporting it, it has a chance to grab a foothold in the search market on iOS. Investors like billionaire fund manager Julian Robertson of Tiger Management may be watching the numbers over the next few months to see if Google Search can make some inroads in infiltrating Apple’s ecosystem.