Google and Apple Introduce Voice Recognition to iPhone

Dennis Faas's picture

One of the most desirable features of the iPhone is its quickness via a mobile Internet connection. But how fast is the Apple iPhone?

Users still have to take out the device, open up a search engine page and type out a desired question or keyword. This process may take several minutes, even with a hi-speed connection, because the pertinent information always seems to be buried under a sea of useless commentary.

Wouldn't it be great if you could just ask the Internet a simple question and get a straight answer?

Researchers at Google have added new technology in the latest iPhone software upgrade with incredible voice recognition abilities.

Users click an application found within the Apple iTunes virtual store, hold an iPhone to their ear and ask any question imaginable. Now answers to questions like, "Who is the oldest person living right now?" and, "Which city has the highest altitude in the world?" are closer than ever.

Of course, inquiries will not be answered by the actual Internet (or "Jeeves" for that matter). All sound is converted to a digital file and sent to Google's servers. The servers attempt to determine the words spoken and pass them on to the Google search engine. (Source:

Voice recognition has already been conquered by both Yahoo and Microsoft. The Microsoft Tellme service classifies its returned information under specific headings such as movies or directions. OneSearch (with voice) from Yahoo returns open-ended results, none of which promises to be as accurate as the one being promoted by Google.

Analysts believe that the drive towards perfection is a lost battle. Both researchers and consumers must understand that the results will never be 100% accurate, thought the drive towards "close to perfection" is one that keeps projects like this one alive and well. (Source:

What's next for Google?

The company looks to profit from the popularity of the service by charging higher rates to advertisers who wish to include their local business or establishment as part of the results page. Now when a user types in "Where is the best place to eat in Nashville, Tennessee?" the results just may include an advertisement from a local business willing to shell out some extra money for the recommendation.

The best part of the service: it is free to use and will eventually be made available using other phones aside from the iPhone.

Look for the application in the iTunes virtual store in the coming weeks.

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