By Philip Elmer-DeWitt
December 20, 2011

Would that Apple’s intelligent assistant were as reliable as its Christmas TV ad suggests

Apple (AAPL) has been pushing Siri hard as the key selling point for the iPhone 4S, especially on TV with ads like the Santa spot it began airing this week. (It’s also available on YouTube.)

But our experience is that between system outages, misunderstandings and the basic limitations of its knowledge base, Siri is considerably less reliable than the ad blitz suggests — a disconnect between promise and delivery that is unusual for Apple.

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