Google rumored to be working on always-on eyes-free Search

June 2, 2014
1

If you've been jealous of the Moto X's always-on voice controls, there might be no reason to be in the near future. Google is now believed to be working on bringing that feature to the general Android population, but might also be tweaking it to be especially usable when driving.

This rumored feature is internally being called "KITT", after the iconic car from the Knight Rider franchise. This basically takes one of the Moto X's most popular feature to the next level. While the always-on feature on the Moto X already implements hands-free controls, it still requires users to look at the screen in order to determine the next voice command to make or action to take. With KITT, Google Search, or to be exact Google Now, will remove that requirement and let you use completely use the app, and therefor all its related functionality, without having to take a glance at the device.

The way this will work, at least in theory, is that Google Search will speak out results to the user. Most of this functionality is already actually available on Android devices, but it isn't completely there yet either. In particular, confirming some commands still need some manual intervention or there are just too many results for the system to speak out, like in the case of web search results. This scenario is definitely unacceptable and, in cases where there is driving involved, potentially life-threatening.

This KITT feature is still in the early stages of development and Google is said to be ironing out many issues, particularly in the way Google Search will relay results and act on its own. Google is investigating the best way for Search to handle multiple results like web links, including simply saving the results for later browsing. There will also a bit of artificial intelligence involved, which will let Google Search take some actions even without the user's confirmation. Of course, this will have to be fine tuned and rigorously tested to prevent the system from becoming too smart for its own good. The last thing you need while driving down the highway is Google Search sending a not so well-thought out and highly emotional reply without your explicit consent.

VIA: Android Police


Recent Stories
  • Dave

    What a horrorfing phrase: always-on. I thought HAL was the last always-on computer!