The war between Android and iOS isn’t just about smartphone or tablet market share. How about Google Now vs Siri? Which is better? Well Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster conducted a study that answers the question.
He threw 800 questions at both apps, and half of them were asked indoors, while the other half was outdoors. The questions were about local information, commerce, navigation, general information, and OS command.
Has Google Now ever misheard a word you meant to say?
Chances are, it has. Although the service is pretty damn accurate, it’s still a developing technology and has a ways to go before being perfect. Google knows its product isn’t perfect, and in addition to improving voice recognition in Google Search, it has now added a “no I said ___” command for when the app mishears something you said.
It looks like some people are enjoying voice controls for media that is currently playing as part of Google Now. So far the only commands available are “Next Song” and “Stop”, but we can only assume more options like “pause” will be added when it’s officially released. It appears that only a a few people have it now which means the full rollout could happen within the next few weeks.
You can easily check to see if you have it. Just say “OK Google, Next Song” and you will see the screenshot at the top left if the update has been pushed to your device. If not, you will see the top right screenshot and you will hear, “Media controls are not supported on this device.” It’s also weird that you need to tap your device in order to play the next song. Hopefully that will change.
You can see a video of this in action by jumping past the break.
Sometimes you need to be reminded of things. Usually its something that requires a daily or predestined amount of time. However, that leaves out the reminders that require only the occasional notice. For those frustrated by this lack of notification, Google’s taken notice. At some point, the search giant added the ability for Google Now to occasionally remind us of an event.
The “OK Google” command on both Android and Chrome has been expanding in both use and languages lately, and today, Google has announced 9 new compatibles languages to activate the service. Hit the break for the full list:
Google Now just got a bit more robust. Besides the search update that allows users to say “OK, Google” from anywhere in the OS, the personal search assistant can respond to near 52 spoken languages, and even accented variants of languages. However an update now allows Google Now to switch between a total of seven languages at one time.
Google talked a lot about using Google Now in different products at their keynote earlier today, but they didn’t mention the newest update to Google Search that’s rolling out on Android devices. The latest update ramps up the capabilities of the “OK Google” hotword detection by setting it up to work anywhere on your phone instead of just on the home screen or in the search app. Now you’ll be able to tell Google to do anything from your text messages app, Angry Birds, or anywhere else on your device. There were some rumors that this would be coming to Search earlier this year, and it’s finally been implemented.
Microsoft has a new virtual personal assistant, Cortana, that is part of the Windows Phone 8.1 developer’s preview and is scheduled to formally launch later this year in the U.S., the U.K. and China. Currently, Cortana can be used by anyone willing to set their device to U.S. settings, an action that has proven to be popular in China. Microsoft does not seem to be content to making Cortana available in different geographic regions – they are also discussing making Cortana available on other platforms, including Android.
Google has added the ability to grab events from Gmail and present them as a card in Google Now, otherwise known as ‘inferred events’. The service has been rolled out for some users, and Now pulls information from users Gmail accounts to create a card.
Users can choose whether or not they want the feature in the “everything else” section of Google Now’s settings. It’s important to note that this feature is different from Now pulling things like flight information. The service may also start pulling from other things, like Hangouts.
Source: Android Police
Google has become better and better at providing contextual cards at the top of search results based on queries made by users. If you don’t know what I mean, just search “What’s the weather?” and you’ll find a nice-looking card with the current temperature, precipitation, humidity levels, wind speed as well as the week’s forecast.
Similar cards appear for various queries, including sports data.
Now, Google has added some really great looking cards for World Cup information, including team lineups before matches, schedules/brackets, standings, stats, and even a timeline of plays from the game. Just search “World Cup” or “World Cup USA” and you’ll see what I mean.