By Jonathan Charles | Aug 09, 2012 01:40 PM EDT
Despite Siri's inconsistencies when picking up accents, Apple provided a degree of humanity to the voice assistant. Google has announced in a blog post that its search app is set to receive similar features.
"Often the most natural way to ask a question is by asking aloud. So we've combined our speech recognition expertise, understanding of language and the Knowledge Graph so that voice search can better interpret your questions and sometimes speak the answers back as full sentences," Google said. The update is available on iOS only.
The app is drawing comparisons to Google Now in Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, but obviously the functionality has to be in an app for iOS. Google has an advantage over Apple: the search app is available beyond the iPhone 4S and the new iPad, to which Siri is exclusive. The app provides only search, not a range of information courtesy of Wolfram Alpha. Given that Google's app runs on the iPhone 4, some wonder why the device does not support Siri.
Searches are read back to users as the results appear, so no need to browse through Wikipedia to find information at the bottom of the page. Searching for the weather will show a 5-day forecast and the ability to select different days.
"You just need to tap the microphone and ask a question, the same way you'd ask a friend. For example, ask "What movies are playing this weekend?" and you'll see your words streamed back to you quickly as you speak. Then Google will show you a list of the latest movies in theatres near you, with schedules and even trailers," Google added in the blog post announcing the app.
A video below shows off various kinds of functionality, and ultimately the app seems to be about getting users information quickly.
Google Search App for iOS is now available to downlod for free. Google Now is exclusive to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.
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