Yahoo! relies on voice commands for search

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We have all become too comfortable with the idea of performing searches by entering a query in our favorite search engine, but Yahoo! is about to introduce a paradigm shift to the world by enabling users to use voice commands to search the web instead. Boerries, executive vice president of Yahoo’s Connected Life unit mentioned that “This is really a sea change. This is not about simple Web links any more.” Guess with more and more people surfing on their cell phones, it makes perfect sense to increase accessibility to web links on these handsets. Yahoo!’s latest oneSearch service will be the latest thrust from the Microsoft target in order to further gain market share that have eroded sharply since the emergence of Google. The idea of using voice commands to perform search is certainly novel, as it enables publishers to provide highly categorized information which enables them to have a greater say in what they want users to see, including greater control on its presentation.

In addition, Yahoo! also will enable oneSearch consumers to use voice commands for search services which currently are beyond existing mobile voice recognition systems or 411-based services. OneSearch aims to bring about a revolution, featuring “wide open” searches that encompass flight listings, locations, Web site names, restaurants, news or game times among others. Users will also be able to revert to type searches any time they like, and vice versa for greater flexibility. Not only that, the OneSeach service also offers alternative suggestions for similar sounding words.

Voice searches take around five seconds to process, where one to two seconds are used to recognize the search while the remaining seconds will return the relevant search results to the handset. The speed greatly depends on your network, so some slower networks might take up to 20 seconds for a search result to appear.

Source: Reuters

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