Verizon Tried To Sign An Exclusivity Deal With Siri

23 January 2013

The Huffington Post:

In the fall of 2009, several months before Apple approached Siri, Verizon had signed a deal with the startup to make Siri a default app on all Android phones set to launch in the new year. When Apple swooped in to buy Siri, it insisted on making the assistant exclusive to Apple devices, and nixed the Verizon deal.

Apple had to cut many of Siri’s original capabilities, as their size meant they became locked up in licensing legalese1. Would Verizon have had better success signing deals?

1 I also think Apple had a certain aesthetic goal for Siri, that didn’t line up with the founders’ vision, which meant that struggling through licensing agreements was even less appealing. I think they wanted to bring focus to Siri, at least initially. There is a quote in the article that sums this up well: “Apple also seems keen to ensure Siri will be decent for many users, rather than genius for a few”.