Dec 12 AT 7:19 PM Taylor Wimberly 332 Comments

Google’s response to Siri is codenamed Majel, could be released by end of year


I wrote about Google’s response to Apple’s Siri voice assistant several months ago and over the last couple weeks I received further details about the secret project. For starters it is codenamed Majel, which comes from Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, better known as the voice of the Federation Computer from Star Trek.

Majel is an evolution of Google’s Voice Actions that is currently available on most Android phones with the addition of natural language processing. Where Voice Actions required you to issue specific commands like “send text to…” or “navigate to…”, Majel will allow you to perform actions in your natural language similar to how Siri functions.

Speaking of actions, it sounds like only Google search queries will be included with the initial release, that could come as soon as this year. I say this year because I’ve heard that engineers at Google X are working around the clock on finishing the first release and the NYTimes previously reported that one product would be released by Google X this year.

December if nearly half over, so a January or February release might be more realistic. Other more advanced features like controlling phone actions and applications with natural language commands are expected to come later.

Google’s Matias Duarte had previously given hints about the future of Android’s voice actions in an interview with Slashgear. Matias said, “Our approach is more like Star Trek, right, starship Enterprise; every piece of computing surface, everything is voice-aware. It’s not that there’s a personality, it doesn’t have a name, it’s just Computer.”

I had previously speculated that Google’s approach might actually include some kind of animated avatar, but it appears I was way off on that one. However, we still expect greatly enhanced computer voices that sound more human and fluid, thanks to Google’s acquisition of Phonetic Arts, which occurred at the tail end of 2010.

Hopefully more concrete details will leak out soon. People smarter than I will read this article and I’m sure they will be able to dig up additional iformation. In the mean time, enjoy Data talking with Computer in the video below.

Update: Check out this new post for additional details about Majel and quotes from Googlers talking about Star Trek.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • Shay D. Life

    Could be great and much better than Siri with Google’s huge database…if this is true. I hope they don’t use the Star Trek UI though. Lol.

    • darkhorse166

      Could be – I still think voice is overrated right now. But maybe that’s because I’m from Australia, and no system in existence (especially Siri) can understand spoken Australian English properly right now. ;-)

      • Shay D. Life

        Understandable. I actually wonder how long anyone would use it. I know quite a few iPhone owners who have said the thrill wears off in about a week or two.

        • stenzor

          Wore off in a couple minutes for me when I tried it out on my friend’s iPhone

          • erikiksaz

            Exactly. It’s just a marketing gimmick. Nobody wants to get caught in public talking TO their phone. Some make the argument that they would hold their phone to their ear while talking to Siri, but nobody does.

            For some odd reason the video above reminded me of the new Tron, specifically Clu’s sidekick, don’t know his name.

          • desean

            Yes, it is the same with my friends when they were trying Siri. I highly doubt many will use it on a day to day basis.

          • bruce080

            It’s hard to integrate it into your normal routine.

          • doktorzee

            Definitely seems more like a gimmick than something actually useful. I personally am just not ready to be talking _to_ my phone.

          • Rudy

            yeah it’s marketing gimmick for now…

            what about ten years from now?

        • darkhorse166

          I get my phone to read out my messages to me when I’m wearing a headset and my phone’s in my pocket, but that’s about the extent of me using voice services.

          • pikahatonjon

            majel. make fedex send me my galaxy nexus already >:o

          • crunchybutternut

            majel. make asus stop canceling all of my transformer prime preorders! =X

          • perlowin

            I use the google voice input all the time — instead of typing. So I guess I’m talking to my phone. But the I start thinking “if I’m talking to my phone, why not just call the person I’m texting and talk to them!!!”

        • Legend

          It wore off on me as soon as it didn’t understand one word of my aussie voice..its not that hard apple! Tomato, tomatoe, sounds pretty much the same…

          • Samar

            Good One.

          • cacarr

            Actually, it _is_ hard.

            *Diphthong alert! Aussie phonology detected…switching to Aussie mode — insufficient data*


        • Daniel Mottard

          My thoughts exactly. It’s fun for a few hours but who will speak to his phone all day long ? Seems a lot of money involved for a gadget…

        • Chris

          I use the voice recognition on my Android every single day. I commute to work and its ideal to text. It always understands me. When I’m driving alone I use it to navigate. “Navigate to 123 blah blah st, Los Angeles california” and done… I drive a stick shift and I understand how dangerous using my phone to do all this searching on the go can be.

      • DroidSamurai

        Australian English? You gotta be kidding, I bet your success rate will still be better than my Cantonese Chinese. Yes, Voice Actions does recognize what I speak in Cantonese, but since Cantonese is a dialect/language that uses different written words and grammar from spoken words and grammar, Voice Action would not understand what I mean. The only way to force it to understand me is to speak in Cantonese, but using words and grammar that is only meaningful in writing (or similar to the way how Mandarin speakers speak.)

        I actually have better success rate getting Voice Actions to work when I speak English. Granted, I’ve been living in US for the last 20 years and spoke English with a New York accent, but still, it isn’t my native language.

        • Dennis Lau

          Then you must give ICS a shot. With the new Voice Typing the accuracy of Cantonese voice input has been vastly improved. Granted, you must pronounce every character extremely accurately, but that shall be to no surprise given the phonetic complexity of Cantonese.

          Oh and BTW, the recognition of Cantonese vulgar terms is extremely impressive. :-)

      • WarDrake

        HAHAHA!! humans have trouble with australian english :P

      • goncalossilva

        From what I’ve been reading it doesn’t work well with British English either.

        • Benji

          You mean english? everyone else speaks something english, we speak english! (apart from the far north)

          • Anonymongoose

            It’s The Queen’s English, right? So, still a Something English. >;D

          • ben

            teres nothing wrong with “northern english” (british english) both siri and my android have no problems in understanding me

          • cacarr

            American English tends to be a little more conservative than British English — in other words, yours is the newfangled English. Rhotic (with ‘r’-colored vowels) Standard American English is, for instance, a bit closer to the spoken English of Shakespeare than modern BE.

      • dafi81

        It is nice but who would really use it in public – would be annoying ad infinitum

        • Stormy

          The same irritating people who use push-to-talk in public? Gawd, that’s got to be the most irritating cellphone gimmick ever.

          • cacarr

            Push-to-talk is quite useful — not at all a “gimmick” — in some business circumstances.

        • Shadowlore

          Got a couple of tools here at the office that use Siri on their 4$’s all the time.. Been tempted to yell something like, “email my wife and tell her she married an idiot”.

          Not sure HR would appreciate that ;)

        • mzoel

          Why exactly would have to be public? Some tasks, such as warning to take the medicine at such a time can be done at home or office. And even if it is in the street, what’s the problem? In a while people thought the same way as normal thought of the pioneers with their Walkman headphones giants. Culture evolves

      • Glen

        I don’t think ANYONE understands Australian English, besides Aussies, lol.

      • Konrad

        No system in existence (especially Siri) can understand spoken Australian English properly?
        Please upload a youtube video where you test it and it fails…

      • James Savik

        Or a Cajun from Southern Mississippi. LOL

      • Louis Lee

        I live in Tennessee and Siri works just fine here, so don’t give up, mate.

      • muks

        Hey Shay D Life from my interaction with Australians i find what one Aussie says is not understood by another aussie let alone Siri or Majel …..Lol

      • pritams

        Very true..but you need to start somewhere…these are the steps towards where Google Translate is now for translation for example….my mother tongue is 6th most popular language in the world and google added support to it in translate only in July,2011 this year after so many years in existence…Australian English ranks far below than that for you get my point here..

      • Brad Harvey

        Have you tried changing the language in the current voice control app for Android to Australian English? I have heard from friends that it works very well.

      • Nargg

        It’s not that voice is over-rated, it’s more like that people are over-rating themselves. Thinking that a non-living object is as capable as the human brain at this point in time. It gets closer every day though…

      • Mike

        I’ll hope it can rap Notorious B.I.G. song:

      • Ash

        Yeah well dont speak like youre from the outback or a relo of Steve Irwin then it should work. Jeannie on my Android works fine with my SGS1 and Aussie accent.

      • Dingo

        Nobody understands spoken Australian English….Bob’s Yur Uncle Wot… ;-)

      • Gazos

        You should hear the responses from english geordie dialect! its a nightmare to get the thing to do what you want

      • Ian

        In their defense, I’m not sure how anyone really understands spoken Australian English!

      • twugd

        It’s not about being able to use it now, consider this a start of great many possibilities. The technology may be in infancy right now but it will surely mature.
        Also, it’s not just about you and me. This could be a boon for visually impaired or people who maybe otherwise disabled.

    • Ryan

      Much to the contrary I hope they DO use LCARS. That would give me a tiny nerd boner.

      I mean huge! A huge raging nerd boner…

      • TJ Mir

        Now now…we don’t want to know about your boner!

    • Anil

      Majel ? Atleast @Google should make sure to name it as GLaDOS or Wheatley :) #portal

      • AlternNocturn

        Oh my God if Google renames it Wheatley and has Stephen Merchant voice it I will forever worship them as gods.

        • Samar


        • Carsomand

          We already do worship them as gods…

      • Tensuke

        This is not twitter. Stop that.

      • Gonzo

        There are a hell of a lot more of us overjoyed at the Star Trek reference than there would be at a Portal reference. Majel has been the voice of “the computer” for tens of millions of people since 1966.

        GLaDOS is small potatoes by comparison.

        • Skyler Grey

          Actually, GLaDOS is computer to the current generation. As we die off, GLaDOS will replace computer as the AI of humanity’s collective unconscious.

          • Ian

            I think we should use HAL, personally.

      • hawaii2000

        Majel barely won over Lwaxana and Nurse Chapel.

    • aranea

      It’s not that Google will have a better voice recognition system it’s that they won’t advertise is it as Apple does. Have you seen the SIRI advertisements they try to make you that SIRI is the next best thing since sliced bread yet tech reviews show that it can’t recognize some if not any of the sentences shown on TV.

    • Lewis McGeary

      Is there a bluetooth device in the form of a Star Trek communicator pin you can stick on the front of your shirt? There should be!

      • vitebsk66

        Agreed! I want one! {Taps pin on chest} Majel? One to beam up!

    • FSFatScooter

      LCARS isn’t really that bad. Something of a precursor to minimalism, if anything.

    • Mike

      Instead of just copying Siri, why don’t they spend R&D usefully and come up with their own technology? This is just Siri envy.

    • RevSpaminator

      Maybe an old school Star Trek UI… Of course that would mean gluing on a lot of bulky buttons, lights and switches. But I would be OK with that as long as it could generate a subsonic frequency that could cause a rock wall to crumble.


    Can’t wait to try it out or least see video of it in action

    • GUI_Center

      Yeah its going to be sweet! Wonder what google has added/improved upon compared to Siri.

      • stenzor

        Mind-reading capabilities

        • euio

          that’s going to be in Android 5.0 Jelly Bean, right?

  • Briareos

    If they’re using that name, they better damn well offer Majel Barrett-Roddenberry’s voice as an option or at least a really, really good simulation. If they can pull that off, I will give Google all of my money forever.

    • alee

      They should definitely try to license the rights to use her voice. They should contact her son about that.

    • Tangent

      Using her voice in the well-known Trek computer intonation would be epic! They obviously can’t have her record new lines, but there’s got to be a pretty extensive catalog not to mention they can probably simulate it really well…

    • ranwanimator

      With as much audio as she recorded for the shows they could probably pull her phonemes and simulate inflection on a large scale.

      • halo0

        Heheh, you said “pull her phonemes”, heh.

        • christopher.andrew.carr

          _”With as much audio as she recorded for the shows they could probably pull her phonemes and simulate inflection on a large scale.”_

          “Phonemes” are, er, phonemic to the whole language community. I’ll not explain phonemes and their allophonic manifestations here — suffice it to say, you probably don’t understand what “phoneme” means.

          They need to replicate the overtones (timbre) to sound like a _particular_ voice.

    • halo0

      As if apple fanboi’s didn’t have enough reason already to call us androiders geeks. :)

      But I agree it would be AWESOME!

      • RevSpaminator

        Yeah, but Android users are real geeks. Apple users are poser-geeks.

        Of course a true geek would roll their own phone OS in assembly language using an old punch card machine. :)

    • wildkarrde21

      I’m kind of surprised Apple didn’t do it with Siri…they could have gotten both nerd cred and general appeal with Majel’s voice.

  • Greg Svo


  • ramenchef

    I’m loving the Star Trek references. Hopefully google’s other services help make this more accurate as they have several services that use transcribing.

    • faun

      It definitely should be. Google Voice voicemail is arguably just a big Google data-mining operation to teach them how to understand spoken language – they would have hours and hours of audio to analyse and perfect their algorithms with!

  • goncalossilva

    So… Android 4.1? It would be great if they could put it in the Android Market, but I’m not sure if that would be easy.

    • Lane Montgomery

      Google could do a point release to tightly integrate it with the system’s functions, but it wouldn’t be required to launch the product.

      If they updated the Voice Search app then they could make a Voice Intent API available to 3rd party apps and allow the user to register spoken names for their apps.

      Then update Gmail, Maps, etc to use the new Voice Intent API to show off what it can do.

      I think the trickiest part here is making it so 3rd party apps can be used with the user’s voice. Apple has proven it can be done in a tightly controlled system, Google needs to prove it can be done in the open.

  • Galen20K

    interesting, can’t wait to try it. Love the name also, Huge star trek fan

  • Nate B.


  • Marlon Rompis

    Majel sounds like a guy’s name so I wonder if Google will go for a male voice rather than the usual female voice like Siri.

    • Chris Clark

      Did you even read the first paragraph fo the story? Where is says Majel is named after Majel Barrett-Roddenberry? You know, a girl? Majel being a girl name?

      • lxgeorge

        And even if you didn’t know that you could always… I don’t know… Google it?

        • euio

          or just ask Majel.
          wait, that’s next month.

    • faun

      Siri has a male voice in the UK (and possibly elsewhere – I’m not sure)

    • azswift

      Majel was Genre Roddenberry’s wife. She was the nurse and voice of the computer.

  • dnar56

    This has lawsuit written all over it

    • Chris Clark

      Yeah, you’re right. Why hasn’t Google sued Apple for copying their Voice Actions? Oh yeah, because neither invented it. :P

    • OGdroid57

      Iphone troll bsing to Majel

      Majel: Thank you sir i comprehend

      • zomygodowned


      • dnar56

        I hope that wasn’t directed at me. (It was sarcasm) I guarantee you I’ve owned an Android device before you, rooted before you and owned more android devices than you…

      • anonymous coward

        Hipster Troll?

  • keridel

    i cant t hink of anything i would like more than having majel roddenbury being the voice control on my phone. it would be Sex-Wee-tastic

    • Jason

      She’s dead, Jim.

      • keridel

        they can recreate it with their new aquisition of phonetics.

        and i want them too. a lot.

  • Deeds

    What ever Google comes up with will be way better than Siri

  • Danny Calderon

    I don’t use voice commands at all, I know the genius button on my MT4G and the native Google voice commands are not as good as Siri but even if they were i wouldn’t use them

  • alxrock

    I really was looking forward to having a little Android on my screen to do my bidding.
    Still cool though.

  • Peter Dowling

    I think a computer like voice would be the only socially and psychologically acceptable one.

    • Peter Dowling

      Well to clarify, reports are showing people falling in love with their iPhones, and not just fanboy love. I feel weird talking to a voice that sounds real, but I know it’s not. Thus a computery sounding voice comforts me in the fact I can still discern real and fake.

  • GrendelJapan

    Okay, this may pigeonhole me, but my first reaction to Siri was that it would be cooler if it used the Star Trek computer’s voice…

    • euio

      and name.
      “computer, make me a sam’wich”

  • stenzor

    As cool as this sounds, I still think the whole talking to your phone thing is mostly useless apart from maybe reading and composing text messages while driving

  • psipher

    Hopefully Majel won’t have the ‘sassy’ attitude that Siri has….I’m so tired of my iPhone friends giggling over some of Siri’s responses….it’s cute at first, but gets really annoying.

    • Carsomand

      Siri. I need to hide a body.

  • aholland1

    I could have used this driving around downtown today. The star trek thing only works though if warp speed is an option!

  • Louis A

    Though I like that google is coming with something like this to counter Siri, I think google and android should be proactive in introducing new ideas and concepts. They shouldn’t wait to response to an in ovation, they should be the leader.

    • stenzor

      They already had voice controls for a while… sure they didn’t utilize their potential to the same extent as Siri, but I still think it’s all a marketing gimmick

      • Louis A

        You’re right, it’s all marketing gimmick and it’s the main reason why apple iphones are doing really well. They don’t have the best hardware and geeky stuff that we all like but they market it well. You know they market it really well when my more who I will say is the last person on earth to want a tab saw and ipad commercial and go, I want one! Android have some really great stuff, why can’t they market it really well?

        • stenzor

          I guess they are not very good at marketing because that is not Google’s core focus. Google started out with 2 engineers, Sergey and Larry. Everything about them is about engineering, from their hiring practices to their workplace philosophy. Everything is mathematical and precise. They actually hated marketing: “The founders don’t value marketing–or most non-engineering disciplines” (“Googled” pg. 19). Larry also said that “people are so focused on outside things and are not focused on the functionality of things” (pg. 38).

          Marketing (and especially advertising) on the other hand is more about emotion. That’s why Apple has always been so good at it… Steve was never an engineer, he was a designer. Now though, Google has realized that in order to compete successfully, not only do they need to have great products, but they also need to have a great design and advertisement. We’ve already seen a couple of great Android ads, and a very nice Android redesign… looks like things are going in the right direction.

  • megatec45

    I see the lawsuits coming already!

    • AlternNocturn

      With how Apple’s been acting lately, it’s almost inevitable, and they’re not going to win it. Voice recognition has been around for several years now.

  • CJ LaFleur

    I know google is smart enough not to leave so many security flaws in this program like apple did with siri lol! Plus, having all of the google services (maps, a search engine, etc.) working in unison with suchamazing android software will be amazing! This is gonna be killer!

  • spintrex

    There’s still something awkward about telling your phone to do things out in public….

    Anyways I currently use SpeaktoIt Assistant and it works pretty well however I only use it when driving.

  • thechad

    So would this be considered a plus one at my company Christmas party?

  • Qrkchrm

    Siri is something you find interesting for twenty minutes and then forget about. When I tried it, the only really useful thing I thought it helped with was as a way of quickly getting text to speech for searches. Android already has decent text to speech already.

    The thing that surprises me most about Siri is that it is Apple and not Google that is doing it. Google has invested tons of money and know how on search, including semantic search. Google could do something like Siri in house while Apple had to contract out to Wolfram Alpha.

    Even though I didn’t find Siri that useful, it certainly has the ability to kick Google where it hurts. Apple took one of the strongest strengths of Android and arguably the whole point of Google’s Android commitment and turned it into something different, something that changed the game in the eyes of many users.

    As an aside, that is something I don’t understand about apple. Each iPhone since the first has come out with a new ‘hook’ that suddenly becomes the next big thing, usually replacing a feature flaw in the previous device. The original iPhone lacked apps, the 3G made apps the killer feature. Did other phones have apps before the 3G? Of course, not quite as good or as easy, but suddenly Apps were all you heard about. Before the 3GS came out, I doubt anyone could have told you what sort of processor their phone used, but suddenly every phone review talked about the processor. When the 4 came out, suddenly every review listed off pixel density like it was the most important feature.

    • ranwanimator

      Apple’s strength is turning someone else’s idea into a “must have” product through superior advertising and hype. Google doesn’t do any advertising directly for Android and leaves it to manufacturers and carriers to spread the word. The result is a dissonant mess. Apple has one clear vision and only one clear product in a line at a time. They also show how the product works and how it can easily work for the end user. This has clearly worked for them.

      • j3rziigurl

        @ranwanimator that is the reason why i cant figure out why Google didn’t take their whole nexus line nd do what Apple does with the iphone…

  • zyphbear

    If they somehow have MBR’s voice (extracted from all the dialogue used in the shows she was the voice and computer enhanced for the remaining words they need), I know many people would love to have it and may leave their iDevices for it!

  • TruFactz

    I can’t agree with that. Google is laughing at the people who are trying to copy their integration process so hard, that they can do that, cause they perfect what they come out with in an expedited manner. Take Maps for instance, or the whole hardware prowess of what makes up google, or Android rather. How long have we been on Dual-Core???? Thats what we’ve come to know and love about Google. Also, you have to remember, when we do come out with something that was done before, we add more to it. Yeah Siri can be talked to like a normal human being, but Majel can be talked to like a human being, AND be used INSIDE apps (I feel a Lifeline game coming on???).

  • humidity

    Go Android Go!

  • merlintw

    Huge props for Majel R. I love it! Suck it Siri! ;)

  • techvudu

    I question the validity of apps like Siri. I know it’s more than just and app but really IMO it’s still a novelty. The time I’ve had hands on basically made a keyword responder and the response was limited on how much it can actually interact. Cool theory and surely one day will be a great feature, but really the selling point for non futureproof hardware.

  • Alec Waddelow

    Way to go Google! This is revenge for Apple stealing just about every technology from us!

  • jsweetser2

    The thing about a google product like this, is they’ve been translating into multiple languages for so long, i’m quite sure it will be MUCH more robust than Siri can ever be. If Google is anything, it is the largest source of information this world has (Ala Library of Alexandria in it’s day). Though I find voice actions only useful in the car, having the product integrate directly into Google apps will be a HUGE plus over the current ones that don’t take advantage of Google Voice and other ‘non default’ apps.

  • Dan13

    I hope it does’t become an over-hyped and under-used functionality like siri. But maybe it being “computer” instead of an assistant will make people feel more comfortable.

    • Steve Heinrich

      That’s true. The idea of it being an assistant is strange. There is a natural disconnect between people and computers and trying to force some kind of “relationship” is unnatural.

  • flip3547

    I’ve been using voice actions ever since I had my G1. Even now I can tell my phone to do almost anything and I get very few mistakes. I guess speaking more naturally would be a plus but I’m used to the way it is now and it seems fine. And now the ICS keyboard voice entry types as you speak, this is cool. I don’t see Majel being that far out timewise. Aside from talking back to me my device already follows my command.

  • Mitch Sears

    Is this something we really need? I played with my friends Siri for a bit and except for a couple bizarre circumstances I don’t really see when I’d use it. Either way, I do love whenever I can say “Oh yeah, that’s a cool iPhone feature, but my android does the same thing. But better.”

    • Isaac Lanado

      I think it will be most effective when driving and you have to send a text, or at least let the phone read to you the text.

      But until this doesn’t come out in spanish its no good

  • jamal

    Google Intelligence for the win.

  • natthompson72

    I don’t see why anyone would need this. I sure as heck know I don’t.

  • Blaw

    Go Google… I rarely use Voice Action, but if Google’s response to Siri comes out I might give a try… I would like GLaDOS, voiced by Ellen McLain (from Portal) to be the voice of it. Awesome !

    • stenzor

      Voice packs would be great! I’d love Darth Vader or Schwarzenegger

    • euio

      sign me up for GLaDOS!
      then go do some science.

  • King Chris Scott

    Its funny cuz our andy’s have been doin this for years now but I do like being able to set an alarm via speech other than that It’s old news for us OG android peeps…former G1 user lol

  • psipher

    Whichever system masters a pirate voice wins in my book.
    “Avast, yer destination is port side…arrrrr”

  • Patricio Acuña

    just read the first paragraphs and wow i liked the name and i liked the reason of the name, hope this turns good and way more powerful than the siri silly capabilities

  • Bman1126

    I’d like it only for one thing. To shut my my iPhone friends up lol I’m glad these componies fight for our love. I only have 1 love for sure

  • Chris Lewis

    Cant wait!!! Im sure it will be lightyears ahead of siri

  • firestarter99

    dear google know one uses siri so please dont waste your time on an android version of it because we will not use it its a stupid joke

  • mikeyDroid

    am I the only one who dislikes telling my phone commands? I like using the UI and whatnot, hands on, touch, etc… only thing I like to tell my phone to do is ‘navigate (somewhere long and hard to spell)… haha

  • HoLfElDeR

    There us a Andorid app rival to Siri it is called Iris. yeah it is Siri in revers, try it is so good, and they are still developing

    • stenzor

      That’s more of a parody app than a rival

  • txbluesman

    I just hope I don’t get cut off by the computer when I am startled. LOL! That’s great.

  • clarkeblaise

    My dream come true. Thank you Google!

  • Adam Snyder

    google knows all

  • kwills88

    And apple fan boys will say Google copied siri and they had voice search first…..would be cool if someone drunk were to ask what’s the closest bar, all slurred and the apps say you sound like you need a cab instead.

  • Prime


  • itzxdjx

    How Epic would it be if this is what Google is holding the US Nexus RELEASE back for!

    • turing

      That would just be another thing to add to the list of ways the US launch has been a failure. There’s no reason to hold back the launch of one of the most hotly anticipated phones of the year to add a half-baked app.

  • turing

    I can’t help but feel that google would be better off holding off on the launch until they can include more than just search. If they re-launch Voice Actions with this new functionality the media will immediately draw comparisons to Siri, and Google’s effort will look pathetic in comparison. Might as well avoid the bad press and postpone the launch a couple months.

    • T.C.

      My thoughts exactly. Why hurry and release a half a**ed product when you can spend a little more time and release a nicely polished actual competitor of Siri.

    • euio

      I agree, except, my guess is that this will not be pushed out. Only people like us will go and download it.

  • Kenneth Ohonba

    Hip-hip hooray for Google’s ingenuity…..

  • Chuxter

    Why is Google working on a Majel program if it already exists? Why don’t they just contact the Star Trek people and ask them to put the program up on the market?

    I can see the headlines already: Captain Jean-Luc Picard vs. Google… don’t we have enough patent wars already?!?

    Haha, JK!

  • Marc’us H.

    Skynet is active.

  • alejoar


  • 94wolfpack

    I have recently rekindled my connection with voice actions. I had almost forgotten about it really until Siri came out. Voice actions is already pretty decent. Any improvement would be an added bonus.

  • Ilyse Rose

    Can’t wait to see what Google can do now that Apple pushed the limits. I enjoy the Genius button on my MyTouch 4G, I’m sure this would blow that button out of the water.

  • Kavman

    I like the idea of voice actions but so far they just seem to be more work and more intrusive than they should be.

    Even using them in the car seems to take more concentration and effort than you would expect.

    Here’s hoping for a better result.

  • renn9420

    Would still like to try it and like a few ppl mentioned it would probably get old.

  • Jeremy Johns

    Would rather like to see Google free texting through phones built-in texting app with the ability to keep/use you cell phone number

  • Nathan D.

    I don’t use voice action, but Ill give this a try for a few minutes atleast.

  • mikeytusa

    I am sure Apple is ponying up a team of attorneys right now while at the same time filing as many ridiculous patents as possible.

    • euio

      i am betting they already built their case for this, right before they released Siri.

  • Stella

    I love the nerds that work for Google. I like the Star Trek analogy and using the code name Majel is sweet. The fact that they don’t want to give the interface an animated avatar or a name other than “computer” is great to me. I don’t want it to be my BFF, just give me the information I requested or complete the task given.

  • Jimmy13

    It’ll be one of those things that you show your friends but never use on your own.

  • Anil

    Majel ? Atleast @Google should make sure to name it as GLaDOS or Wheatley :) #portal :)

  • EwanRGR

    Surprised at all the comments about folks thinking Apple would sue over this. Reality is that AT&T holds most of the major patents in this area through the former Bell Labs, which you can also trace through many of the computer voice packages. I presume both companies have done cross-licensing agreements with AT&T as part of their general vendor relationships.

    As for the utility, voice by itself is of only limited use. As many folks have already pointed out, there are a lot of things that you don’t necessarily want people to overhear. Even so, one of the big problems with current voice products is they are stand alone. For example, if I want to ask any product “What is that building over there?”, it may perfectly understand the question, but it has no sense of where I may be pointing. I could ask Siri to “recommend a good restaurant”, but unless I am willing to spend time outlining what a good restaurant is to me, I’m going to get a minimally helpful answer at best.

    Our virtual assistants need to learn how to read us like a real assistant does – picking up our vocal cues and habits to “interpret” what we really mean. Then I could get excited about this.

    • Steve Heinrich

      It might be a little TOO relevant.

    • Steve Heinrich

      Ha! It might be a little TOO relevant.

      • Steve Heinrich

        Sorry about that repeat there.

  • euio

    even though i think it is exciting and google will certainly do it better, it sure does look like they are just playing catch up. now don’t get me wrong, that is not entirely bad, since android already offers much more than the fruit company.

    i’m just saying it looks like a they are putting off-road tires on a sports car. sure, the horsepower will help those big tires climb over anything better than a truck, but the trucks will laugh at them and call them a copy-cat.

  • Arturo Castro

    The thing im more interested in so more about this Google X place? maybe an article? =]

    • Taylor Wimberly

      No need to rehash the New York Times. Just click the link and read their article.

  • Hall Lo

    Tho i am happy to know Google is improving the voice recognition system, i am worried that it will be the next target in apples lawsuit wars…. ;(

  • blaseb

    This is gonna be sick. I hope it gets released in the Market for EVERYONE before 2011 is over. That’d be so #winning!!

  • minimage

    As much as I do NOT want my phone talking in a female voice, nicknaming it Majel just fires up the Trek geek in me. Even better, if they actually could make it sound like the lady, herself.

  • jst4tim

    With all Googles info this should be huge can not wait.

  • cxandroid

    I for one welcome our voice activated Android overlords.

  • dandroid4g

    Google’s got this in the bag :)

  • ZRod

    Lol to the vid.
    I kinda wanna haveta say “Computer” before a command instead of something like “Siri” or “Majel”
    It just sounds cool =)

  • JC005

    “Computer, locate number 2″ lol

  • Jorge Eslava

    After trying Siri on an iPhone I can honestly say I don’t see myself using a feature like this any time in the near future, just like Bluetooth headsets, I don’t want to look like a crazy person talking to themselves.

    • Jorge Eslava

      I guess I can’t keep up with the times, now get off my lawn you crazy kids!

  • aranea

    The big question is will it support different accents or more importantly different languages.

    The second big question is will it on ICS only. Because from what Motorola and HTC were saying we aren’t very likely to see ICS on our phones soon.

  • Marcus

    I can’t wait to see what Google has in store. They never cease to surprise me. I think Majel will be amazing!

  • akashwani

    really wish/hope Google gets it right. I believe that the success of any voice recognition capability depends on accuracy (accents/context), interface (UX/UI/ease/presentation) and utility (backend database/interpretation). For the existing similar tools, the sensation wears off because of the lack of one component or the other…

  • hokiewv

    After using Google Voice for the last couple of years, I’m more than a little skeptical. I generally can get the gist of the transcribed audio but it is usually far from accurate.

  • Anthropic

    That would be the most awesome thing ever if it sounds like Majel Barret, I couldn’t think of a more awesome and fitting tribute, I hope they can get the rights to do so.

  • laosgurllynn

    I dont want a computer talking to me, its just like one of those things where you call to an automated voice that directs your call, but couldnt recognize your commands and you end up getting frustrated. Not that I have tried siri because I dont own apple products, I kinda get the idea its like that. Correct me if im wrong.

  • redman618

    I wonder when Google will stop chasing Apple and let Apple chase them. I used Sirion my wife’s iPhone for half a day, the novelty wore out quicker than Apple could charge my wife’s credit card! What Google should be working on is pushing out ICS, than Apple will really have something to catch up to. Just my two cents!!

  • Adryan maldonado


  • Trinhbo

    Majel. Make me a sammich.

  • cwjones4

    Can’t wait to give this a try; i was afraid i was going to have to wait until this time next year when jelly bean is released to see a major google siri-competitor. Although I wouldn’t even mind them holding off on releasing it until it’s fully baked, with more of the major features (ie app controlling) just so it doesn’t look like google is trying to “push out an inferior product” (as i’m sure every apple fanboy would try to say). I can get by with speaktoit until then.

  • Emmanuel Lazcano

    I hope we are able to rename ours, with it comprehending. I’ll name mine Cortana :).

  • Lucian Armasu

    I don’t like the name. It will sound weird in non-English countries, and I don’t think it sounds that well in English-speaking ones either. But it’s probably just a code name anyway. If they say it doesn’t have a name, then they probably mean you will be able to speak directly to it, without naming it.

  • Rob Vermeij

    But why? Iris is already there to fill the gap, I love her with her dark humor :P

  • zippyioa

    I just don’t get the attraction of “talking to your phone” apps. Except for when you are driving, when is it inconvenient to touch your phone!?

    Most importantly, if you use these apps as you walk down the street, you look like you require a room with rubber wallpaper!!

  • mvndaai

    I am sad that Siri was the only addition to the iphone 4s it isa scam whichI think is sad to see google copy.

  • rishabhbhatia36


    • Samar

      Android has had IRIS, may be not as interactive as SIRI, but still.

  • Samar

    How do they find these wierd names.. LOL

  • Ivan Todorov

    This is cool only the part that these people are Star Trek fans is “me don’t like” :)

  • tmihai20

    It’s not going to use any voice from Star Trek, unless they cut a deal with whomever owns the rights to it. I bet it’s going to have a female voice too, just like Siri. Let the games begin!

  • Ivan Todorov

    Star Wars 4EVER
    Google also :)

  • kzlife

    Does anyone really use siri or other voice-apps? Does seem like a gimmick only and not that useful.. Correct me if I’m wrong because I’m from Sweden :P

    • benben

      I agree, it seems like a gimmick to me as well. I dread the not so far-away future with everyone walking around asking their phone to do this and that…

    • Robert Whittaker

      I’ve tried a few. Vlingo is probably the best.

      The problem is you can’t talk to a voice app naturally, as you have to wait for it to go away and work out what your saying. I’d want to try it on the galaxay nexus/ICS as it’s almost really time.


      No; but my 5 year old loves it.

  • benben

    It’s going to be exciting to see what comes out of this. If only to shut up my iPhone 4S-owning cousin. I most likely won’t even use it except for trying it out as English isn’t my native language.

  • Robert Whittaker

    I’m still not convinced about talking in to a phone, it’s just weird!

  • smisa27

    I’m sure this would BLOW away Siri once Google releases theirs. They have been up on there’s for so long and it’s already pretty far advanced. So I’m sure it would no doubt blow the competition out of the water.

  • Lewis McGeary

    Regarding a Google X project being released this year, a slip up on Google+ suggested Indoor Maps was a Google X project, maybe that’s what NYT were talking about.

  • eliander mendoza

    this would be innovative if you ask me… no like siri witch right now its more like a toy and i believe its only a beta at the moment but yea this looks promising.

  • Gazos

    This will be awesome when I build my Arduino Android powered house Robot/ Home automation system!!

  • la_resistance28

    I hope this doesn’t require a data connection like Siri. I love the usefulness of voice control, I just don’t like it being dependent on my data signal. It’d be useless indoors, too.

    And is anybody looking forward to the eventual William Shatner or Patrick Stewart Google commercial? “Computer? Find me some tea. Earl Gray. Engage”

  • YagoRosaF

    I think december is way too soon for that

  • seansin

    I don’t I’ll ever miss not having any voice control app… be it Siri or Majel.

  • Jan Moisen

    i waiting like a little child waiting on Christmas to see what google will come up with, one of my friends told me that the siri is okay cool made, and it have some humor nut you have to talk a bit clean English to get it to respond, hope google will do it better and fast get it in other language then English

  • lokidokie

    Yeah this sounds rad. Siri isn’t too bad, but I’m sure Google will do better in the long run. They have a huge database of data to work with

  • ToonPanda

    Hahahahahahaha :D :D
    BOOM! bye Apple ;)

  • Petr Nuadar

    I don’t need it

  • reuben.andrades

    What google has to do is make it available to all android devices.

  • Michael C.

    Props to Google for giving at least some sort of recognition to the source of inspiration for much of this mobile tech we’re seeing come to life before our very eyes. Somehow I doubt Apple’s codename for the iPad was the “iPadd”…

  • Jbolen818

    It’s great that they are improving the voice commands. Competition is always a good thing. I just don’t know if voice control is that big of a deal. I used to use it all the time when it first came out. Anymore I forget to use it. Seems more of a novelty at this point. Hopefully I get proved wrong and it changes how I use my phone.

  • Kam_Pewter

    This might come in handy occassionally if Google puts enough app control in Majel, but as far as I’m concerned voice recognition is demoware. No one needs a phone to tell them “how their day is” and I can look at the weather widget on my home screen faster than Siri (or Iris) can tell me “it sure looks like snow.”

  • Anselm Friedrich

    still, great times ahead

  • PiTTDRoiD

    I hope that it be better that the great sh** IRIS….please….GOOGLE….

  • Jeb

    this would be awesome

  • MoSDeeb

    Sounds great and all; I just hope it ties in system wide and is not a completely robotic voice.

  • sharxx

    This is good BUT, voice talking to phone is OVERrated. Its practical but in a very narrow way. What I would like to see in Android is a unified hardware before a few more pops up and further segmentation happens. I may shift to Apple because of its amazing ecosystem :/

  • Lee Swanson

    I loaded VLingo on my phone. I haven’t really used it all that much. I don’t have a long commute to work. We I do have long car rides, I usually have someone else along who likes to drive.

  • honourbound68

    this could be incredible…tied into google translate and you won’t need a travel dictionary or foreign language lessons EVER.

  • ld6772

    I quite hopeful about this, the likes of cluzee, vlingo and iris have been pretty poor.

  • breinhar

    I’ve had Siri for several weeks and I really only find it useful while driving. The text message (which I’m pretty sure android already supports but I don’t know how well it works) is useful while driving and even when not driving because I can say a text much faster than I can write it. Although I’ll never do that in public because I feel like a fool talking to my phone in public. Also asking for directions while driving is nice.

    One this is for sure, I think I bother people I voice text because my messages are so much longer than usual haha

  • Kris Isaksen

    This could be very cool.

  • pekosROB

    Whatever it is, I hope they let you call your device whatever. I think it’s kinda silly that EVERY iPhone user that uses Siri calls their phone Siri… Siri is such a cheating whore and apparently will just take orders from anyone! :-P

    It would be awesome if you could say, “computer” or whatever the hell you wanted to call your phone. “Hal, please schedule my appointment for tomorrow,” or “Tim Tebow, what are you greater than?”

  • mclarensr

    sounds good.

  • WlfHart

    Majel’s voice would be amazing, but so would Brent’s…

    • Dan Jones

      If they were going to use a voice from Star Trek, I would definitely vote for George Takei. Who wouldn’t love to hear George Takei talk to them every time they talk to their phone?

      • pekosROB

        But it would take ten years to listen to feed back from your phone!

        “George, where can I get a cup of coffee?”

        “Whhyyy, full bean or grind? Would you like a chain… or an independent cof-fee… house?”

      • takiefan

        “Dry oatmeal”

  • Oskar Wismierski

    Don’t really need it but it’s a nice thing to show off. Might be useful for long commands if you cannot be bothered to write too much or ur in a hurry ;)

  • yankeesusa

    I’m looking forward to it. I have tried several voice command programs on android and they all mess up half of the time. Its just faster to do the search on the phone instead. Last one I tried was cluzee and it was ok just not something I’d use on a regular basis. Gesture search is the best for me as of now. Like someone said earlier, with googles huge database, majel should be pretty good. I think its then all dependent on the quality of microphone your phone has. On my evo it was horrible. On the evo3d it is better. Its sad when its even better on the nexus one than on my 3d.

  • Gazos

    Anyone know what the little android figure and number means in your profile here? mines says 50? Long live android!!!!

    • Jason Toering

      I asked that a few days ago and never received a reply. My guess is it’s the number of profile views, but that’s probably completely wrong.

    • pekosROB

      I think you get a point or two for every post. It basically shows how active you are I believe. Mine is 864 (at least until I posted this)!

      • Gazos

        Well then what does the green number represent next to your name how many +1s u have for posts?

        • pekosROB

          No, the green/white number is a score based on how many +1s you’ve gotten and what not. Now my other number is 900 and I think that goes into your overall score too.

          • Gazos

            Ah right thanks

  • kimminer1

    much a do about nothing

  • Jason Toering

    As long as I can it’s name to “Minion” I will have no problem at all talking to my phone in public.

    “Minion, remind me to pick up milk on my way home tonight.”

    *Odd look from some random person*

    *Point phone at them*

    “Minion, remember this face for future assimilation.”

    *Turn and walk away*

  • donger

    This is gonna be so cool.

  • aaroncoffman3

    some of my friends who use siri have kind of mixed reactions about the feature so hopefully google will tackle this and make it awesome.

  • _AjD

    I would fully embrace an entire star trek approach. Preferably my phone would need to make the corresponding bleep bleep bloop sound before and after as well. #nerd

  • Jimmy13

    This is only slightly relevant

  • David Sumner

    Personally i think Siri is over rated. I’ve used it on my sisters iPhone and it gets old fast. Though i have to say i do use voice actions alot for searches. And when I’m in a rush and / or don’t feel like typing on my sensation, i use it to type out my messages. (Personally i find dragon dictation to currently be the best at recognizing natural speech). I’m interested to see what Google is gonna do with this. =)

  • kusic

    That is exactly what I was hoping for… Startrek like voice control… Those guys at Google must have same dreams like me. I did not like that Siri style from the start.
    I do prefer real girl for fun and talk and computer for assistance.

  • ndub21

    This is going to be pretty awesome. I bet it will kick Siri’s ass!

  • jlp

    Better watch out… apparently CBS is aggressively hoarding their Star Trek trademarks. Remember the Android Tricorder app?

  • calihawki

    I am still skeptical of these voice recognition apps more of a gimmick than real life everyday use. I can barely get Google to perform accurate voice to text right now.

  • Jed Perlowin

    Oh come on — as soon as Google comes out with this EVERYONE is going to be getting it and using it and saying how cool it is! Well, at least for 5 minutes…

    Those of us (old farts) that grew up on Star Trek have been patiently waiting for the day we could talk to our computer/phone like they did. Everyone remember the Star Trek movie where they went back in time and Scotty tried talking to a Mac? “Use the Mouse”

    • cristian cristiandonose

      Thats what i said too. Try it for a few days , after that maybe uninstall…

  • jimnguyen

    I hope the majel is affective because I can voice text while driving for those last minute things.

  • JDea

    Skeptical on this, wonder how well they can integrate the voice into android, on multiple handsets compared to SIRI

    But hope it’s just as good!

  • Skis03

    The ability to send hands free texts messages and get directions by using your voice on Android would be amazing. I am excited to how they create their own version of “Siri”

    • cristian cristiandonose

      You already can do this in Android. In google maps for example in the search box you have a small microphone, tap that and say your destination.

  • cristian cristiandonose

    How many of you would use this on a regular basis, i know i dont. Maybe i’ll give it a try but after that i dont know.

  • jasonlee

    Am I the only one who thinks both companies are putting alot of dev time into this fad / gimmik?

    • rekaviles

      Looking at the bigger picture, its just the natural evolution on where things are going.

      but for now… yah ,it’s a gimmick. I dread the day where ppl are walking around talking to their phones for info.

  • PapaLos

    I’ve voiced that I’m not big on one company doing something and then another following suit to compete. It’s the way the world turns, blah blah, I know. But It happened with Sony and Microsoft following Nintendo, and it’s happening now with this.

    If they do it, great. If it’s better, awesome. I’m just not a big fan of the whole voice control thing. I watch way too many movies to know how this turns out.

  • ordio

    Haha this would be AWESOME to see. :) Code name Majel just makes sense :)

  • Matic Krmec

    It would be awesome if it was the same voice as in Star Trek Voyager. Loved it :D

  • AME

    What about the apps that already do this? I’ve been using “Jeannie” by Pannous for a while now and she’s incredible. Way better than my friend’s Siri and she has more of a personality. I think Google can do great things with such a massive budget and stock-pile of data. It’s giving Siri too much credit by considering her the only app like this around.

  • Lee Swanson

    Google voice actions were available before Siri. I’m tired of the media making is sound like everyone is playing catch up to Apple. Apple just takes existing technology and claims it something revolutionary through a slick marketing campaign.

  • anonymous coward

    Wake me up when they have Brian Blessed’s voice on my Android…

  • Emmanuel Rodriguez

    I guess it would be cool to show off to people with iPhones. But seriously I would probably use it for a week and forget about it lol

  • Ted

    It’s definitely as good, or better, than Siri. At least on the tablet you can sort through different answers with these swip-able trays. Like, if you say “show me the statue of liberty” it’ll automatically take you to Google Image results, but another tray beneath it might be it’s location on google maps and then another tray might have a wikipedia page. It’s also pretty good at giving you succinct answers if you ask it a question. The UI is definitely more powerful than Siri’s, even if a little harder to navigate.

    At least at one phase of the development you would activate it by saying “Computer…” It was hard not to use a Jean Luc Piccard accent when doing it!

    • azswift

      Make it so!

  • azswift

    Anybody using some of the third party voice apps on Android? I saw pretty good review but didn’t want to spend for the features. I’ve been sticking with the base app.

  • Jonathan

    If they actcually proceed with this, I hope they make one with the voice of StarTrek Voyager’s computer. :3

  • David Williams

    I think it is one of the most awsome ideas in a long time. just think of the possabillitys. google is used every day and on tones of devices. phones, computers, cars, T.V. sets etc. just think if you could control them just by talking to them. “T.V. turn to station 173. music half volume. computer how are my stocks doing? car start engine.” the possabilities are endless. :D

  • rima sappington

    This would be all well and good if siri actually understood human phonetics.

  • Mecandes

    The integrity of your entire post is shot in the foot at the end when you say you previously speculated that they would use an animated assistant. Ain’t no one going to do Clippy again after the coal-raking Microsoft got! So… what else are you making up here? ;)

  • gmuny2002

    To bad they couldn’t use her voice, that would be so cool!!

  • Panatella

    What a bunch of geeks! I think personally i want to adress an AI with Computer and not as a personal assistant. Google has implemented this way better than Apple did. Go team Google!

  • Mike

    If only google search is included in the initial release, how is this any different than what we have today. There’s nothing natural language about Google seach. I say a phrase Voice Actions doesn’t understand, and it sends the text translation to Google for search results. Am I missing something?

  • Martin L.

    Not sure why Google needs to re-invent it. There is already an app called: ‘Andy’, which works better than Siri. Then there is also Vlingo, Skyvi and Speaktoit and couple other siri like clones. Why would Google decide to spend time and money on something which is already widely available is beyond me. People already have these tools available in Android market? Is this just another attempt at catching up with Apple officially?

  • Niels Mayer

    For Qt (Linux, Nokia N9/N950, etc) there’s also VoiceToGoog:

    IMHO. unless the computer *actually* understands you, I don’t think it’s a good idea to create a fake UI for “intelligence” (see “Understanding computers and cognition: a new foundation for design” by Winograd and Flores. Hopefully Google won’t forget the lessons taught to its founders by their Stanford University advisor. Apple apparently never learned them when designing Siri.).

  • Victor Swindell

    I’m glad to see Trek Type apps…if CBS doesn’t shut it down like the very useful Tricorder all

  • kusine

    I would love this. I use the voice actions all the time, though they’re not always reliable.

  • raichleb

    I thought Apple owned the copyright to my voice and that I was only allowed to use it to speak to an iPhone.

  • joeldm

    I love Google, but there’s nothing in the Android market that comes close to Siri’s ability to parse and search and even ask you a question about your query using natural language. This from a CBS News Report on SIRI:

    Apple’s Siri “is a remarkable innovation that took two dozen of America’s greatest research institutions more than 40 years to develop,” CBS News reports. “The current version of Siri represents the first stage of a breakthrough in the field of artificial intelligence… Siri’s technology represents decades of combined research on artificial intelligence from more than 20 universities, including Carnegie Mellon, Harvard, MIT, Stanford and Yale. It’s a spinoff of SRI’s Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes (CALO) project that was originally funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) under its Perceptive Assistant
    that Learns (PAL) program.”

    It’s not likely that any of the current offering come close to SIRI’s abilities despite the fervent desire of droidfans that they do. I’ve had a couple of Android phone users show me their phones’ abilities and while they can do a lot of VLingo-like searches, VLingo isn’t SIRI and isn’t even close. I used VLingo on my last iPhone.


    • joeldm

      . . . and it seems like every time Apple releases some new ground-breaking device from the iPhone itself to the app store, there’s always someone who says, “Oh THAT? We’ve had that for YEARS.” . . . and yet no one knew?

      BTW, what version of Android is your phone on and do you know your update path?

      • Matt

        im using Galaxy s II , and running latest gingerbread, gonna get the ICS in january or february, there is alredy a “leaked version”

  • Lobo

    So back in 2003 I worked in the Microsoft Natural Interactive Services division headed by Kai Fu Lee. Our project was to speech enable the OS and various apps. It was code named Majel.

  • Alex

    I hope it will be better then Microsoft’s attempt

  • sonicshorz

    How cool it is to let family be your computer voice #startrek

  • Trevor

    I use voice commands all the time – “Navigate to XYZ,” etc.

    The “learning” functionality has got it’s pluses and minuses. It understands me pretty well, but it doesn’t understand anyone else in my family – especially my 6 year old. Hopefully the new system will be more adaptable.

  • John

    If you can’t beat ‘em, copy ‘em.

    • takiefan

      “If you can’t beat ‘em, copy ‘em.”

      Or buy them. And then put the full force of your marketing department behind them.

      Just like Apple did.

      Voice commands existed on Android long before Siri was released. Granted it is not as robust as Siri. Which is why Google is undertaking this project.

      And don’t forget the way Apple pretty much copied notificatons and the notification tray from Android.

  • Santana

    Watch out Siri

  • Rodney McKay

    Why does Google have to “respond” to Siri? Everyone knows it’s just a gimmick!

    Or, maybe it’s…not.

  • Leo Young

    It is true that accents are still an issue but I can see that a large enough database of regional accents will render that a moot point soon.

    I am a fan of voice services. I prefer to use my phone hands free and I use voice services on the computer as well for some things. It keeps your hands free to do other things. And I find using the voice on the computer to proof things is a huge help.

    It is the real language search that has me excited. Bring it on.

  • Ash

    Google should call theirs “Kit” after the voice activated car in Knight Rider. Google Kit is easy to say and remember.

  • jamboy5590

    lol i saw this woman the other day at work screaming at her iphone ralking to siri it was funny

  • john

    Using vlingo on my Android and works great, a whole lot better than the Voice Command program that came with the phone. VC didn’t work well on my original Droid either. Vlingo is tops and free. Majel will have to overcome VC’s lameness.

  • Dboy352

    Honestly what does Apple have over Android anymore then the fact that it’s an iPhone. If you took the newest Android phone, let’s say the Galaxy S II, and put an Apple logo on it you would sell more of those then even iPhones. All people know when they get an iPhone is that they are getting an iPhone. Android let’s you do so much more and truly make the phone your own and now with Majel, come on really???? Between Googles datbase and the hardware they are putting in these phones. I really see 2012-2013 being take over years for Android and google.

  • sgumer

    this sounds interesting and we will see how it works.

  • ibap

    Is someone going to sue them over using “Majel”?

  • Blake Britton

    I’m thinking of a moment in Star Trek IV when Scotty speaks to the computer mouse… “Computer?” LOL…

  • mex

    Why sould Google do it?
    Android already has SPEAKTOIT, that beats Siri all the way. Try them side by side.
    I think this is just rummor that ifanboys spred to show how ”magic” is stupid Siri and Android copy the ”magic”

  • gaurav12931

    Siri! whats that?……Oh Wait its that glorified software that is just used by dumb apple users to show off!!…Android will come up with something thats wayy better than siri can ever be…..Period

  • Matt Yearian

    I think it would be even cooler if it talked back at you like in TNG. TEXT IS LAME!

  • Niels Mayer
  • Mike Reed

    If anyone is interested in a desktop Natural Language learning personal assistant, one is getting close to beta release. Everyone is invited to request to be part of the beta program. See

    Sasha will have a much greater capacity than Siri and anyone can teach her. If you teach her something interesting, you can even publish it for free and other users will rate your work and if it’s good enough, it will even be automatically sent to other users who have subscribed to the auto learning feature.

    IBM, Apple and Google all have massive resources. Sasha has one guy in a basement, in his spare time, but I’ve been working on this type of technology for more than 30 years. My first online version was KIPP in 1986. Sasha is going to be my most powerful version. I am thankful that there is so much hype around this type of technology now. It has been a long time coming.

    It is my hope that if I create the platform, that the people will make her amazing by teaching her to do, say and show things that we can’t even yet imagine. I will work hard to extend her features to make her capabilities ever expanding.

    Join the beta… Then ask, what will YOU teach Sasha?

  • Androidcrazed6

    Quick question.

    Should i get the transformer prime, samsung galaxy s2 epic 4g touch, or galaxy nexus when/if it comes on sprint.

    (btw on sprint currently)

  • Deepak Gupta

    Me: Siri get me Majel!!!
    Siri: I am sorry, Majel is superior to me so can not be reached right now.

  • deucedaprodeucs

    There was an app released before the iPhone 4s came out that’s JUST LIKE Siri, called “speaktoit assistant”. It does EVERYTHING Siri dies, with an avatar, and natural sounding vice (after several updates). It also controls phone functions and has witty convo.

  • twugd

    More competition will always lead to more innovation, better products and lower prices for the common man. So good for us.

  • ccn_cristi

    Looking forward to it!

  • chabuku

    After turning on personal voice recognition (that little checkbox that allows it to start learning from your personal voice) has anyone experienced significant increases in usability for voice actions?

  • Bob

    What’s the status Gladys? I’ve been checking this page almost every day in anticipation this would be released before 2012 as “possibly” stated. Well, it’s 2012…. Whazz up????

  • Bob

    Seriously, what’s the status of this? It’s the new year and almost half way through January. Anyone have any sort of update? Any little nibble would satisfy my craving for this….

  • Peter Rosenthal

    Does anyone know if google will release Majel on older android devices, i just pick up my galaxy nexus (Loving it so much, its my new best friend) and i would be extremely mad if i do not get Majel, plus i hope the “Flagship” google phone receives it

  • Jessica Cody

    It’s good to see Google is making the most of natural language processing: