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Thursday, May 8, 2014

Google could bring voice commands throughout Android UI

We know that Google is working on bringing some UI changes to Android in the next release, but it looks like the company is preparing for a massive overhaul in interface and functionality when it comes to the mobile OS. If the rumours are true, this could be the biggest shift in Android UI and navigation since Google moved to software buttons with Android 3.0 all those years ago.

Android Police reports based on information received from sources that Google wants to put the ‘OK Google’ hotword and voice-based actions throughout the OS. The report calls it ‘OK Google Everywhere’. The feature would allow users to control different apps including possibly third-party apps with voice commands. The voice recognition feature would reportedly be always-on, just like the Moto X and will only work when it recognises the phone owner’s voice. Google could also add specific actions for individual apps through voice commands, such as sharing a just-clicked photo from the gallery app or sending a reply to a new email, using a combination of commands with the ‘OK Google’ hotword. It could extend beyond just such simple actions to actions related to the content of emails and messages, such as when a friend asks you to check out movie timings in a new Hangouts message, Google will be able to launch actions related to that using voice commands. It’s like Android’s powerful ‘Share’ button but totally voice dependent.

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