Google offers voice search on Apple iPhone

“Pushing ahead in the decades-long effort to get computers to understand human speech, Google researchers have added sophisticated voice recognition technology to the company’s search software for the Apple iPhone,” John Markoff reports for The New York Times.

“Users of the free application, which Apple is expected to make available as soon as Friday through its iTunes store, can place the phone to their ear and ask virtually any question, like ‘Where’s the nearest Starbucks?’ or ‘How tall is Mount Everest?’ The sound is converted to a digital file and sent to Google’s servers, which try to determine the words spoken and pass them along to the Google search engine,” Markoff reports.

“The search results, which may be displayed in just seconds on a fast wireless network, will at times include local information, taking advantage of iPhone features that let it determine its location,” Markoff reports.

“Raj Reddy, an artificial intelligence researcher at Carnegie Mellon University who has done pioneering work in voice recognition, said Google’s advantage in this field was the ability to store and analyze vast amounts of data. ‘Whatever they introduce now, it will greatly increase in accuracy in three or six months,’ he said,” Markoff reports. “As with other Google products the service is freely available to consumers, and the company plans to eventually make it available for phones other than the iPhone.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Kevin P.” for the heads up.]

MacDailyNews Note: As of publication the app is not yet available via the iTunes App Store.

9 Comments

  1. This may actually save a few lives as drivers don’t have to type the question as they drive.

    Still, drivers need to be careful when looking at the results.

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