The game is afoot, Watson! Google has brought forth something that can very well prove to be a game changer in the race to construct the best voice recognition engine. “Okay Google” rivals “Hey, Cortana!” and very soon, the two of them will meet face-to-face.
Everybody keeps saying that the future lies with voice controlled device. There is much truth in that saying. Lately, a lot of companies have allocated large sums of money into improving voice recognition technology. From Dragon naturally speaking to Microsoft’s Cortana, everyone is keen on winning the race for the perfect artificial intelligence, capable of understating speech to perfection.
Google has just announced that it will be playing another card in this big chess game. Another feature will be coming soon on your Android devices and its performances are outstanding. Google’s voice search engine, named Google Now, is a perfect example of that old adage: “practice makes perfect”. It’s very well optimized and has quite a lot of voice commands packed into it.
Users have been sending positive feedback concerning Now’s functionality. Basically, Google Now can let you do basically the same things that you do on your android device, but without having to use a virtual\physical keyboard or touchscreen. The only downside to this service is that you must have an active internet connection. Google Now’s offspring, called “Okay Google” is another variation on the same voice recognition engine developed by Alphabet Inc..
For now, “Okay Google” is limited to a few basic function. Unfortunately, limited functionality entails a low pool of voice commands. But Google announced that it is working on a way around these limitations.
Google even had the courtesy of providing us with a video demonstration of Okay’s functions. There are two clips, designed to show us what we can actually do with the new search engine. In the first clip, the voice recognition engine that powers “Okay Google” was put to the test by a user that commands the application to open an audio stream. By saying the words “Okay Google”, followed by “Listen to NPR” the service will fire up an audio stream via the NPR application. In the second demonstration, Okay Google is required to open the TripAdvisor application. The user’s wanted to inquire Google about local attractions. By saying the same opening line followed by “show me nearby attractions”, the TripAdvisor application will pop up, showing you the nearest things that are worth visiting.
The application is still in its early stages and Google promised to enrich it with more voice commands.