Search with your voice on Android

Tuesday, February 3, 2009 | 12:10 PM

Don't want to type a long query, like "U.S. economic stimulus plan", on your T-Mobile G1? Just say it. Or, perhaps you'd like to browse the web without sliding out the keyboard? Well now you can. For those of you with a G1 in the US, the next time you get an Android update (which will gradually roll out starting this week), you'll be able to start searching -- and surfing -- with your voice. And you can use the feature quickly and easily because it's integrated in the Android browser and the home screen search widget.

You can start searching by voice with just the touch of a button. On the home screen search widget, look for the microphone button right next to the search box and the search button. Press that button, wait for the "Speak now" prompt, and then say your query. You'll soon see search results formatted for the Android browser.

Also, whenever you're in the Android browser, just press the "Menu" button and tap "Search". You'll see the same microphone button there too.

This makes doing successive voice-triggered searches -- and mobile web surfing -- easy and fast. Try speaking your favorite web sites, then tapping on the top search results to get to them.

Note that you can use the "Voice Dialer" app, which you can find on the main app menu, to search for your contacts with your voice to make a call. Or, simply long-press the green call button and follow the prompts on the splash screen.

Finally, if your speech is not interpreted correctly, try tapping the down arrow to the right of the search box and you'll see a drop down list of other suggested queries. Look for your query there. In the meantime, we're constantly working to improve our algorithms, so stay tuned for future improvements.

14 comments:

Keshav Kulkarni said...

when is it coming to UK??

Sorry for writing here..when are we getting the application "gmail tasks"?

Stephen Hind said...

Yes when will the UK get voice search? How about voice dialling and instant messaging with Windows Live, AIM and Yahoo Messenger also?

Keshav you can get Tasks at gmail.com/tasks

Keshav Kulkarni said...

Stephen,
I am already using tasks from gmail.com/tasks. But on android we have applications. For example, I will not go to browser and type www.gmail.com to check my e-mails, instead, I click on the gmail application. I need similar application for tasks as well.

thanks for the reply.

keshav

mirox3m said...

Keshav, the easiest way is to to save the Tasts website as a bookmar, then add it as shortcut on your android home screen.

Al Sutton said...

Given the problems Googles iPhone voice search had with English accents I'm guessing we may not see it in the UK.

It may end up being just another feature that's been dropped from the UK version (added to the list of non-Google talk IM, Amazon MP3 store....)

voice lookup said...

Interesting, is the speech recognition running on the phone, like how "Voice LookUp" does on the iphone?

Sahil said...

When i this phone coming to India?

GenericWit said...

Wicked awesome. I woke up to the update this morning, and the google search has actually worked for everything I've said. It's pretty exciting.

Maybe soon it'll convert your dictations to written/typed documents.

donte said...

Any idea how to get the update dialog box back if you accidentally dismiss it? Is there some "update" button somewhere that I just haven't found yet?

hurtstotouchfire said...

Got the push this morning. It asked if it could use my GPS location while it was setting itself up, and I reflexively said no, but I'd like to try it out. Of course now I can't find anyplace to change this. Is there any centralized web resource with documentation of the various apps?

Russell Heilling said...

Given that the Amazon MP3 store has launched in the UK now it would be nice if the next update included the app...

Although if the UK aren't getting voice search then I have doubts about us getting any update imminently. This release is a bit of a non-event without it. Latitude would be nice, but I'm happy with brightkite for now.

Taylor B said...

The UI of Google App on the iPhone should be revised to mirror Android's VoiceSe. Switching from searching 'Web' to searching 'Maps' is not as easy as it appears to be in Android, and at least not as easy as it should be.

Willem vS said...

when is this cool feature coming to dutch phones... we can speak english!!!

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