Google is unveiling an enhanced version of Voice Search to its iPhone app that could rival Apple’s inbuilt Siri software.
Google announced on Wednesday that the new features will be added to its iOS app on iPhone and iPad (iOS version 4.2+) within the next few days.
Voice Search on iOS will be able to find map information, weather results, and information on individual people and topics.
“Often the most natural way to ask a question is by asking aloud” said Amit Singhai, Senior Vice President of Google Search, on Google’s official blog.
“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.
“You just need to tap the microphone icon and ask your 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 theaters near you, with schedules and even trailers. It works for everything from celebrity factoids to the height of Kilimanjaro and more. When Google can supply a direct answer to your question, you’ll get a spoken response too.
“These are baby steps, but important ones on our way to building the search engine of the future – one that is much more intelligent and useful than it was just a few years ago. It’s a very exciting time to be working in this field.”