Voice Guided Search is said to be the “Big Thing” of today! Apple created a sensation with Siri; Samsung tried to come with an answer to Siri with its S-Voice, but failed miserably. The world was waiting for Google’s response to Siri. Obviously, Google wasn’t going to just sit and watch while Apple capture the market. With the launch of the latest version of Android Jellybean came Google’s answer to Siri called as Google Now.
Google Now is a personalised voice operated search application, that replaces the Google Search App on Android devices. Google Now is currently available in only Jellybean and not for any other older versions of Android.
When I first heard about Google Now and saw a few videos released by Google, it felt as if the videos were crafted. But when I tried out the app, I were shocked to see the awesome accuracy with which this app can understand and recognise normal human speech. This app introduces a concept called “cards”. These Cards are generated when you speak out a few select hotpick words(keywords). These cards compile the information and make it interactive!
The App’s widget looks exactly like Google Search’s widget! But, when you click on the widget the App starts listening to your commands. It understands the normal informal speech as long as you don’t use slang words. Even the voice of the App used is very humanly so it seems less robotic as compared to its competitors; very unlike Siri and S-voice.
I decided to test How efficient the App was; So, I started off with simpler questions like, “What is the time right now?” and “How is the weather here?” It didn’t amaze me much when it answered these questions correctly. So, I started asking more complicated questions like, “Where is the nearest hospital?” and it quickly launched the Google Maps and got the driving directions to the Hospital nearest to me. It is simply amazing to see how Google Now can answer to almost any question you can throw towards it. Right from “What is the weather?” to “Who is the president of Zambia?” I It seems to have an answer to any question!
When you ask questions like “Should I carry a jacket today?” it quickly looks up the Weather conditions for today and answers your question. It also solves any simple equations you ask it! It also does tasks like setting Alarms, calling Contacts, playing Songs by a particular artist, etc. If it could, it would also train your pet!
While I was testing the App, it got my words wrong(maybe due to my accent) only a couple of times, but that can be neglected as no other app, not even Siri is 100% accurate. On its downside, Google now isn’t very friendly as compared to Siri. It doesn’t answer questions like “What is your name?” or “When were you born?” But, that is very trivial as it a Search App and not a imaginary friend, and it does its job really well. As far as my judgement goes, Google Now is by far the best Voice Guided Search App. Period!