Google’s Upcoming Voice-Driven iPhone Search App

John Markoff, reporting for The New York Times:

Users of the free application, which Apple is expected to make available as soon as Friday through its iTunes store, can place the phone to their ear and ask virtually any question, like “Where’s the nearest Starbucks?” or “How tall is Mount Everest?” The sound is converted to a digital file and sent to Google’s servers, which try to determine the words spoken and pass them along to the Google search engine.

The search results, which may be displayed in just seconds on a fast wireless network, will at times include local information, taking advantage of iPhone features that let it determine its location.

Is it really going to be more convenient than just typing out “how tall is mount everest” in the Safari search field? I’m highly skeptical.

And why did Google do this for the iPhone before doing it for Android?

Friday, 14 November 2008