Google’s Nexus One Isn’t Afraid of Speech! January 7th, 2010
Yeah everyone’s writing about the new Google phone. I’ve heard various reports about it being underwhelming, and in-need of the marketing hype that Apple is so good at. Everybody loves to compare the iPhone with the Nexus One and talk about screen size, weight, camera capabilities, software, etc.
Here’s my 2 cents on speech recognition and Bluetooth for these devices:
Apple’s initial iPhone release had speech recognition–phobia, with no factory options for implementing voice recognition commands. It was such a shocking omission that many of the mainstream reviewers even pointed it out. In various industry conversations I heard “Steve doesn’t like speech recognition”. As a result, 50 speech recognition applications quickly appeared in the Apps store, and by necessity Apple soon implemented Voice Control for music and voice dialing. I assume Apple implemented Nuance technology and most likely in a local version that runs on the iPhone.
What Google’s done with the Nexus is WAY different. They are embracing speech recognition from the start, and not just implementing “me too” features. Google is pushing the boundaries by including speech recognition for dictation (text messaging, email, social networking, etc.) and mapping/GPS type functions. I remember the original Android announcements mentioned that Nuance was their speech partner, but it seems like all the big guys like to start with Nuance then switch away. My guess is that the Nexus One uses homegrown (Mike Cohen and Co.) speech recognition, and since it is server based, it should adapt and improve and just get better with the data they are collecting. I give Kudo’s to Google for this!
On the Bluetooth side of things, we were shocked and hurt that we couldn’t use our BlueGenie Voice Interface Bluetooth headsets to easily call up recognizers on the iphone for name dialing. Although Bluetooth makes a clear protocol for this, it wasn’t implemented on the initial iPhone. New iPhone versions do support this, but Apple never clearly thought through the importance of a cohesive user interface and functionality with Bluetooth connected to its phones, especially when speech recognition is involved.
If Google is smart, they won’t only introduce a Nexus One phone, but they’ll come out with a really cool Nexus One headset that TAKES ADVANTAGE of all the great speech recognition software on the handset, with one seamless voice user interface! The Nexus One has been blasted as nothing really new, but this type of integration with a hands-free headset or car kit could make it TOTALLY REVOLUTIONARY.
Hey Google – make a BLUEGENIE VOICE INTERFACE HEADSET!