For years, people have been listening to one voice for directions, text messages and recommendations on escort locations…you know, stuff like that. That’s right: Siri, Apple’s robotic yet personable narrator for its iPhones. Now, we finally can see what she looks like!
A normal human being!
Siri’s real name is Susan Bennett, and she’s a successful voice actor living in suburban Atlanta. Her voice is that of many GPS systems, telephone systems and commercials. She has a calm demeanor and smooth mannerisms — pretty much exactly how you would assume Siri would be, except less patronizing.
The weirdest thing about this generally tame story (so, really, the only weird thing)? Bennett had no idea what the company was planning with regards to her voice; they were recorded way back in 2005. She found out about her part in Apple’s hugest project after a friend who owned an iPhone pointed out how similar Siri and Bennett’s voices were. Lo and behold, they were the same.
Bennett says she decided to stay anonymous about it until recently, when her husband and son encouraged her to come forward. And with Apple’s iOS7 utilizing new Siri voices, Bennett’s voice is no longer the most heard one in our ears. Additionally, a video from Verge titled, “How Siri Found Its Voice” accidentally led many of its viewers to believe another woman was Siri. Finally, Bennett figured now was the right time.
“I really had to weigh the importance of it for me personally. I wasn’t sure that I wanted that notoriety, and I also wasn’t sure where I stood legally. And so, consequently, I was very conservative about it for a long time. And then this Verge video came out … And it seemed like everyone was clamoring to find out who the real voice behind Siri is, and so I thought, well, you know, what the heck? This is the time.”
Well, awesome! I am admittedly really shocked that she had no idea initially, though I have a feeling this isn’t the first time something like that has happened in voice work. On a completely different note, this means Bennett presumably had no idea she would be cursing out 12-year-old European kids, right?
Photos: Yutaka Tsutano / Flickr, CNN.