Is Apple's Siri Too Popular?

With users lining up to try the acclaimed new voice-activated software, many are experiencing technical problems

Siri, the voice-activated personal assistant that comes with the new iPhone 4S, is drawing rave reviews as consumers take to Twitter and the blogosphere to express their delight.

“Just had my first interaction with Siri. Be mine. #iPhone4S,” dddero tweeted.

Others have taken to posting the questions they ask and showing Siri’s responses, such as this one from mattgemmell: “Me: "What's the best mobile phone?" Siri: "The one you're holding." ”

However, its popularity has already become a problem.

As consumers flooded stores this weekend – to the tune of more than 4 million devices sold – their desire to test out Siri has resulted in connectivity problems.

Users on Twitter and the Apple support forum have expressed their frustration since the new phone’s debut on Friday.

“Siri can't connect again… So far iOS5/4S experience have been pretty half-baked. Great sounding ideas – miserable implementation,” maximrydkin tweeted.

Thebrowncoat wrote, “Apple may have sold 4 mil iPhone 4S's, but I think they may need some extra servers for Siri. Getting constant "unable to connect" errors.”

As the latter tweet suggests, tech experts believe Apple’s servers have been overwhelmed by the number of users trying to use Siri.

Talk about a good problem to have – so long as it does not persist.

Apple’s decision not to release the 4S was initially greeted with some indignation.

Where was the iPhone 5? Why does it look exactly like the iPhone 4?

However, there is one thing that those at the unveiling and those who have used the device since agree on – Siri is quite impressive.

“Even in a noisy environment inside a car going 60 miles an hour, it can still understand most of what you’re saying if you hold the iPhone up to your ear,” Charlie White wrote for Mashable.

Meanwhile, blogger Johnny Evans over at Computer World thinks that Siri will be a game changer in the field of search

“Apple is expected to sell up to 25 million iPhones in the next few months. Eventually, for many, Siri will become the single main point of contact for the information they need. It will learn and grow,” he wrote.

As the connection problems suggest, the software is not perfect. It doesn’t always understand what someone says, and it sometimes misunderstands a question.

But even if Siri has room to grow, its immediate popularity suggests Apple has once again defied the doubters.