Apple hires Amazon exec Stasior to run Siri | iLounge News


Apple hires Amazon exec Stasior to run Siri

Apple has hired Amazon exec William Stasior to run its Siri unit, according to a report from AllThingsD. With a doctoral degree from MIT, Stasior was recently in charge of A9, Amazon’s search and search advertising unit, which he co-founded, and previously served as an executive with AltaVista. Although Stasior will be in charge of Siri, the report speculates Stasior could also help to boost Apple’s search and search advertising technology. Apple’s Siri unit has notably lost two co-founders in the past year — Adam Cheyer left recently, and co-founder and former CEO Dag Kittlaus left last October — raising further questions about Apple’s ability to retain key personnel after major acquisitions.

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Here’s hoping he can pull it out of beta. Me and my daughter have only had access to Siri since Friday and it is one great source of comedic relief but not remotely functional.

In addition to the bit about, “raising further questions about Apple’s ability to retain key personnel after major acquisitions”, it also highlights what I see as one of Apple’s bigger stumbles in recent years: they love going after what they see as the shortcut.

They notice a popular app and instead of thinking they should put more effort into their own inadequate voice control they’d left fallow for years, they decide to spend over 200 million for the app and make it exclusive to certain hardware “just because”. Apple could have hired 200 top shelf programmers, assigned them to voice control project, and paid them for a decade for what they paid for Siri. Now after more than a year, Siri is still a toy, and because they’ve made it such a high profile part of iOS AND Android equivalents are popping up like mushrooms, now they’re right back at having to do all the heavy lifting themselves, including poaching this guy for who knows how much money, because they thought it would be easy to just buy it off the shelf.

Posted by Code Monkey on October 16, 2012 at 9:37 AM (CDT)

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