Saturday, May 26, 2018

Do you talk or type?

Credit: Apple
You can not only talk on the phone, but you can also talk to the phone.

It is common knowledge -- at least among people who regularly use smartphones and other handheld computing devices -- that there is an option to speak to the phone, instead of typing.

Ask Google

For example, if you are looking for something on the Internet, you don't have to key in words into search engines likes Google or Bing or Yahoo. You can tap on the small microphone icon, within the search box, and speak to your phone.

Actually, some mobile keyboards give you the option to switch to voice commands, which means you can actually dictate an email rather than type it out.

You can also unlock your phone by speaking into it.

What is the weather today?

There are also voice-based digital assistants. Google has one called Google Assistant, there is Alexa Echo from Amazon.

Alexa is particularly useful. You can get advice on what the weather would be for the day, so you can decide what dress you should wear; or you can ask Alexa to add cheese to your shopping cart.

Then, why type when you can talk?

Very often talking is easier than typing, is it not? But when I look around, most people are typing on their phones, and not talking to it.

If talking is easier, then why is everyone typing?

13 comments:

  1. I use Apple’s Hey Siri option to get many info and small jibs done without typing.Very useful.

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  2. I guess its got to do with not disturbing others around us or looking silly, than ease of use :)

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    1. That is what I have also suspected. The other day, when I was in the metro, I used the voice command to unlock my phone and get some tasks done, like opening my email app, getting a couple reminders added to my calendar. I noticed that some passengers were looking at me, quite curiously.

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  3. I have Google Assistant. It can do lot of things including play music from (paid) YouTube.

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  4. I think it is mainly because you have to spend some time training your phone to understand you otherwise it spouts a load of garbage. But on Whatsapp if I have a long messages I prefer to say it and record rather than type it because a human is going to interpret it anyway. For short messages I still type. That perhaps is a force of habit.

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    1. On quite a few occasions I have recorded and sent the voice message rather than type out the whole thing.
      Thanks, Kanika.

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  5. Hi Pradeep ... I was typing up someone's memoirs when I was back in the UK, and he was dyslexic - so I'd get a garbled message via Siri - but that was fine ... as I could untangle it for him.

    I keep thinking I must do it this way for myself ... I am getting a new phone this week ... so then will try speaking to myself probably ... re my blog thoughts etc ... cheers Hilary

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    1. Hope you got your new phone, and you able to dictate some text into it. Thanks, Hilary.

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  6. You can even dictate your text messages...

    That said, I usually type things in. I won't ask Siri. The voice to text translation usually is full of errors. I end up having to fix more mistakes after dictating something.

    One day, I was covering a 7th grade history class. One boy was looking up Chinese ships for the project he was working on. He asked Siri to show him pictures of ships. He got pictures of chips. I suggested he emphasize the "sh" sound. And it worked, but Siri didn't hear a "p" sound at the end. Nope, more of a "t" sound. And he got pictures all right...

    Yeah, so I type. Fewer errors that way.

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    1. That's interesting anecdote, Liz. I agree that the dictated text ends up with too many errors.

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