Holy free app! Robin could be an Android packin' driver's best friend

Holy free app! Robin could be an Android packin' driver's best friend
Tucked away inside Google Play Store is a free app called Robin that could easily be mistaken as another Siri knock-off. The difference, though, is that Robin isn't supposed to be Siri, at least not yet. Designed for drivers, Robin is limited to navigation, real-time traffic, finding parking or the nearest (and cheapest) gas station, weather, telling jokes, reading Yelp reviews and there also is some Twitter integration. Because it is in beta, the app does misfire every now and then and forces you to repeat your request. We asked Robin to find the nearest gas station and it said that there were none nearby even though a Mobil station is less than a mile away. We saw nothing at all resembling the smooth running app shown on the official video. The developer, Palo Alto based Magnifis, says that Robin is a "student" and is not yet perfect.

According to the developer, Robin is supposed to be like KITT from Knight Rider as it will eventually be able to learn the driver's usual driving patterns and proactively report on traffic, navigation and speed traps. Robin will even learn the user's preferences in jokes and news as this functionality is added. Just keep in mind that this is not Siri or even S Voice for that matter. In fact, don't even try to ask Robin to do some of the things that Siri does. For example, we asked Robin to set an alarm and received a response that it was "pissed" that we asked because it is not yet programmed for such a task.

If Magnifis can work out all of the bugs, and keeps Robin's eye on the road, this could be a nice little gem of an app. On the other hand, if the developer gets caught up in trying to copy Siri, it could end up misunderstood and lost in a sea of Siri copycats. As it is, many reviews at the Google Play Store are negative as users try to compare Robin to Siri. For now, that is a battle that Robin is not going to win.

source: GooglePlayStore via Phandroid




1. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Holy unoriginal!

3. Non_Sequitur

Posts: 1111; Member since: Mar 16, 2012

Just like your comments. Every. Single. Day.

13. Mxyzptlk unregistered

u mad bro?

12. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

g.k, taco, mxy, strikercho, or whatever name it uses nowadays should form an apple love society....

14. Mxyzptlk unregistered

This isn't about Apple. It's about being original.

2. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

The fact that reviewers are comparing Robin to Siri is bad news for Robin. The developer has basically not been able to position Robin where it wants. The epitaph for Robin will be about how it couldn't be a better Siri for Android.

4. SlimSoulja86

Posts: 660; Member since: Nov 03, 2011

Why do we always have to compare everything to Siri, and call them Siri copies, while these sorts of things hav b there for like, EVER? It's not like Siri was the first VA. Let's all get a grip and life while we are at it. Siri is not the first VA, so let's stop comparing all Virtual Assistants to Siri, or call every VA a copy of Siri. Yes Siri is currently d best in its ranking but not the first.

6. ilia1986 unregistered

It's hopeless man. Once Apple gets its dirty claws upon a product\service, and then markets it as its own - everyone suddenly start believing that they invented it in the first place..

11. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

the funny thing is that not as many apple iphone/ipad users use Siri as much as Apple would like to see, thus the update in iOS6. Honestly, if you have to update Siri so that it can tell you the score of a game, then something is not right with the program. It should be written to respond to nearly any command, ask for more input from the user, and once anaylsis has been completed, it should be able to actually talk to the user.

16. D_Tech-tive

Posts: 104; Member since: Feb 12, 2012


20. Mitchel

Posts: 228; Member since: May 25, 2012

True story.

5. Birds

Posts: 1172; Member since: Nov 21, 2011

Thats a huge turn-on. Now I want an iPhone....

22. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Good idea.

7. GP007

Posts: 2; Member since: May 20, 2012

Apple gets ripped pretty regularly on its shortcomings or copy cat apps. Apple has Siri, Android doesn't have an equivalent. Perhaps Robin will fill the void, perhaps it won't. Apple upped the ante on this front. Will the Android community respond?

10. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

lol, it was apple who had to respond - Android has no need to respond to an inferior product - run along now, kid...mommy is calling.

15. LionStone

Posts: 1048; Member since: Dec 10, 2010

It IS hilarious...when apple 'just' finally catches up with Voice Actions, and now with with Maps and Navigation...funny.

17. paulyyd

Posts: 340; Member since: Jan 08, 2011

@networkdood someones mad

19. GP007

Posts: 2; Member since: May 20, 2012

Not a fan or user of Apple. Regardless, your response is not really any different than that of an Apple fanboy who sensed some slight. Where is Androids version of Siri?

21. Mitchel

Posts: 228; Member since: May 25, 2012

Samsung Galaxy S III has its own voice assistant too..http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKAZOJ5uJFc

8. InspectorGadget80 unregistered


18. Blackhawk4

Posts: 9; Member since: May 15, 2012

Care to go into more depth about why it is horrible, or are you fine with just sounding like an idiot?

9. adi4u4882

Posts: 137; Member since: Jan 10, 2012

When i just read the title, I thought Robin was used for compiling Drivers for Android.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless