All I Need is the Air that I Breathe

Just to search on my iPhone — all you’ll need to do is speak. Google has added sophisticated voice recognition technology to the company’s iPhone search software. You can speak into the iPhone rather than type with the iPhone’s keyboard, and Google will search for relevant info.

While much of the time it returns gibberish, researchers are working on making it better at recognizing terms. It works best for finding restaurants nearby (because it also makes use of the iPhone’s location information) and for getting driving directions. It’s also useful for looking up contacts in your address book for quick dialing.



Ironically, talking search on the iPhone would be a better experience than what is depicted in the T-Mobile G1 ad, which uses Google Android. The actors are musing about searching for exotic things, like whether sharks have eyelids, or whether twins have the same fingerprints, and the best thing about the device is its keyboard. Perhaps talking search will appear shortly for the G1 also. Yahoo, Microsoft and even Google — with its 1-800-GOOG411 — already offer voice recognition for mobile search queries, but the feature has not yet appeared for Android.

Innovation occurs on the iPhone first — not only because it occupies the leading innovator’s space in the smart phone market, but also because the entire package works like a platform for new ideas. Part of that package is the control Apple exerts over the ecosystem.

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