Google India on Tuesday showcased its Voice Search technology at an event with footballer Bhaichung Bhutia, singer Shibani Dandekar, and Masterchef India judge Chef Kunal Kapur. At the event, Sandeep Menon, Head of Marketing, Google India, demonstrated voice search, to showcase the fact that it now works well with Indian accents.
"We had 700 volunteers across India collect voice samples and used our engines to analyse the data," says Menon, explaining that the Google Voice Search analysis is cloud-based, and therefore, "the system learns and gets better are more people use it."
The Google Voice Search feature is available for all users running Android version 2.3 onwards, for users of the Google Search app on iOS, and also on desktop computers via the Chrome browser. To access Voice Search, go to Settings within the Google search app, select Voice>Language> choose English > English (India), and you're ready to go.
At the showcase event, Menon demonstrated how Google's Knowledge Graph also has Indian language support, asking for a list of Hindi movies to be displayed - which the app quickly did, though the voice read-back accent is terrible, something even Menon had to joke about and promise to improve.
"From asking Google where you can watch the latest movie to finding out cricket scores at the touch of a button, Google is there to help you get the answers you need," says Sandeep Menon. "We're delighted to showcase the improvements we've made to Search for Indian users today."
Aside from search, the voice input support for Indian languages also extends to functions like typing in an email, or sending an SMS, with support for punctuation along with words.