Google Voice Search Comes to the Middle East [Finally!]

by: Matthew SabatiniDecember 11, 2011
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Google Voice search (commands) has been one of Android’s most signature features throughout the years of its existence. However, due to the amount of work that must go into teaching this program to recognize different languages, it has been slow to expand to different parts of the globe. However, Voice Search is now supported in 29 languages and accents in 37 countries. More specifically, users in Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Qatar, UAE, and Israel can now speak Arabic and Hebrew into their phones to get search results quickly and easily.

Google stated on their blog that they were having trouble with Arabic and Hebrew because of all of the different pronunciations and meanings. They claimed that they “trained [their] system [by] collecting over one million utterances in Arabic and Hebrew, using the languages as they are spoken in the more populated parts of each country”. Although they also admit that not every different accent and dialect will work perfectly with Voice Search, Google is clearly working on perfecting the tool for its fanboys and girls in the Middle East. To use Google’s Voice search tool, simply touch the microphone on the search widget on your home page, or download the  Voice Search app from Android Market.

Have you tried out Voice Search in any of the new languages yet? If so, let us know how it is working in the comments below.

  • Zivberko

    Its works real good in hebrew!

  • Jasem

    I’ve tried their voice dictation in standard Arabic before and it works quite well. I would imagine that their dialects would be done well too. But I wonder why they choose UAE Arabic. There are 300 million Arabs and only about 800k UAE dialect speakers