It’s no secret that Nuance has been a sole provider of voice recognition software for the PC and MAC; Nuance having recently purchased and redesigned the MAC Dictate voice recognition software.
Nuance did use the voice recognition in T-Mobile’s phones with the Genius Button, but it’s not something that was really offered as an ‘application’, but more of an integrated option of the phones that were being sold.
But Google has been making some great strides in voice recognition and these strides in voice recognition ability and recognition rates could really start hurting Nuance in the voice recognition world, as it pertains to Smartphones.
I’ve been an user of Dragon NaturallySpeaking for many years and find that on the PC the software is awesome, but having being denied a Dragon NaturallySpeaking application for the Android has forced me to use Google’s voice recognition software.
Early in the use of the Android platform, I’m positive that Google’s voice recognition was not good. It had a lot of growing to do; it had a really hard time recognizing some of the most basic words. Stating words one at a time and very slowly was painful; very painful. But over the last year I’ve notice a massive increase in recognition percentages. I rarely have to say phrases twice to have Google voice recognition understand what I’m stating.
There’s a couple of things that makes voice recognition work better; the phonics and the words used in a sentence [the prefix and suffix words]. Most people only use a certain level of words in their vocabulary a day, so being able to identify those and then put them in the proper context as you say them normally is the biggest benefit.
Nuance has been offering specific vocal packages for a while, like eastern us vs southern us, for a while now, but Google is really ramping this process up. They’ve started using personalized speech, linked to your Google account.
Meaning, the more you use Google Voice with your Android phone and Google account, the better the voice recognition will be.
Keeping in mind that with Google Voice, and even the Dragon NaturallySpeaking for the iPhone, the processing of this data isn’t local; it’s sent to a data center for processing and then sent back, given to your phone, and then pasted; just that quick. So if you’re a privacy conscience, you may not want to use it.
I believe the development over the last year, the effort placed on the voice recognition from Google, has been impressive. And with Nuance not offering Android an application for Dragon NaturallySpeaking is really giving away customers to Google. By not offering the application, the Nuance guys are forcing users to try/use another voice recognition solution that’s comparable; to the point users would be willing to stop using Dragon NaturallySpeaking [or Nuance's voice recognition solution].
As of July 2010, I had inquired about an Android version of Dragon NaturallySpeaking; there was no solid announcement from Nuance [Peter Mahoney].
As the Smartphones of the world get better and as voice recognition becomes ubiquitous, I would think that it’d be in Nuance’s best interest to offer this, but not yet; and Google like all the other aspects of the business— is gaining ground quickly.
I wouldn’t be surprised to see an offering from Google, sometime soon, of a voice recognition for their Chrome operating system, or a PC version of Google voice recognition— it’s right there; not much else is required. With all the high-speed connections and high powered PC’s in the market, having a cloud based voice recognition application for home use isn’t far fetched.
Until next time,
Larry Henry Jr.