Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Siri in iOS 14.5 Will Ask Users to Clarify Which Music, Podcast, and Audiobook Service They Prefer

Sarah Perez, TechCrunch:

For example, if you tell Siri to play a song, album or artist, it may ask you which service you want to use to listen to this sort of content. However, your response to Siri is not making that particular service your “default,” Apple says. In fact, Siri may ask you again at some point — a request that could confuse users if they thought their preferences had already been set.

This is a clever way of dealing with multiple options without requiring users to dig into menus or make manual settings. But we often want to pick something and stick with it. Computers are just tools; as they attempt to make more decisions for us, it can sometimes be delightful but it can also be maddening.

It reminds me of that button in the Twitter app that allows you to toggle between an algorithmically sorted timeline and a reverse-chronological one. If you open the app often enough, it will usually stick with the last sorting mode you selected. But if you do not, it will revert to showing an algorithmic timeline. If you prefer reverse-chronological, it sucks.

It is a bit like if you went out to your car one morning and the seat and steering wheel were in a completely different position to the way you left it. It is uncomfortable. It is no longer yours.