Building rich and empowering experiences for everyone means making things work in the language they speak in. In helping solve the challenge for India’s next billion users, Google announced the launch of voice search in eight additional Indian languages. Along with Hindi, the new languages include Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu. Starting today, speakers of these languages will be able to use their voice to dictate queries — both in Gboard on Android as well as in Search through the Google App.
With this update, users can now use voice input in their local language to search for what they are looking for without the need of typing on a tiny keyboard, making the user experience that much faster and easier. In order to perform a voice-based search, users will need to set their language in the Voice settings menu in Google app.
Using voice to dictate a message is not just convenient, but it is also up to three times faster than typing. The new language support will also enhance voice typing on Gboard, helping users to respond to emails on the go and send texts within messaging apps. To enable Voice Typing, users can install Gboard from the Play Store and choose their language from the Settings. Then all it takes is tapping the microphone to start speaking. Voice search in these new languages will be available in Google Search on iOS as well.
While incorporating these new languages, Google has worked with native speakers to collect speech samples, asking them to read common phrases. This process not only helped train Google’s machine learning models to understand the sounds and words of the new languages, but also improved the accuracy when the system encountered more examples over time. Voice input for each of these languages is expected to get better over time, as more and more native speakers use the product.
Earlier this year, Google had launched a set of new products and features to help create more language content and better serve the needs of the next wave of Internet users coming online. Starting today, these new languages will be made available in the Cloud Speech API and will soon be extended to other Google apps and products, including the Translate app. Google’s speech recognition now supports 119 language varieties in Gboard on Android, Voice Search and more.