iOS5: Voice Control use case

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by MikeELL, Apr 21, 2011.

  1. MikeELL macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2006
    Perth, Australia
    I've been thinking regarding the rumors of increased AI and voice control
    functionality in iOS5 - what's the point? It's a feature on my 3GS which
    I've only used once or twice, and even then it was just for kicks. Why
    would you want voice control on a device which has a perfectly good

    Answer: You wouldn't.
    My hunch: This is for the ipod nano / iphone nano (I'm assuming there will
    be one with the same form factor as the nano). Sure voice control might
    not be perfect for dictating messages/emails, but imagine the
    possibilities for having email/sms and even the web read out to you while
    you're going for the jog (or whatever else you want to have your eyes free
    for). What if you could talk to the AI and have it assist you navigating
    the web (and reading it out to you). That would be awesome.
  2. cdmta macrumors member

    Feb 27, 2011
    There are 2 things I miss most about android. These may bring me back if apple doesn't implement something similar.

    1-Voice control. text to speech and using voice control in navigation.
    2-Google maps navigation and how it was well tied with everything else in android.
  3. The Californian macrumors 68040

    The Californian

    Jan 17, 2009
    Surfers Paradise
    I have always thought it would be nice to have the functionality built into the OS to read my emails and texts to me while I'm busy doing something else.
  4. lsvtecjohn3 macrumors 6502a

    May 8, 2008
    Text to speech is great on Android phones, one of their best features. Not everyone wants to type a long text or email. If you can speak it that would be so much better. IMO I think Apple will improve the voice controlls in iOS 5
  5. iStudentUK macrumors 65816


    Mar 8, 2009
    The reason I don't use voice control is because it sucks. Too few commands and you have to hold the button for 3 seconds or something. If they improved it dramatically I'd use it.
  6. jonnyb macrumors 65816

    Jan 21, 2005
    Rye/London, UK
    Whereas I use it rather a lot. I'm often in a situation, say in the supermarket with a basket of shopping, where I want to listen to something different. I don't want to put my shopping down and fish my iPhone out of my pocket and navigate to want I want. i just use the headphone remote to say 'play album xxxx'
  7. FSMBP macrumors 68020


    Jan 22, 2009
    Let me know what's safer & easier, navigating a touchscreen while driving OR using a voice command. I use it daily - I can either fumble around & take my eyes off the road to play music from a certain artist/album, or I could just say it.

    Or when I'm wearing gloves & walking outside in freezing cold weather, listening to music, I can just call someone without reaching into my pocket, taking off my gloves to do so.

    Just because you don't use it doesn't make it useless for other iPhone users.
  8. kevinof macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2008
    I haven't tried it on my wife ip4 but on my android its pretty damn good. I use it mostly when driving and its never failed me.

    I use it for making calls, sending texts (send text to joe message how's it going... send). No using the touch screen, no taking the eyes off the road. I can send email the same way, it can read text messages to me and I can reply without touching the phone.

    You can also search (google macrumors, bing macrumors or search macrumors) and the navigation is also great (navigate to 1 main street).

    I'd say when done right its very useful, especially for us drivers.

  9. bobobenobi macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2010
    Maybe *you* wouldn't, but *I* would. I use the voice control feature every day. I find it much easier to hit a button on my steering wheel than to take my eyes off the road to manage a touch screen.
  10. iceterminal macrumors 68000


    May 25, 2008
    Dallas Tx.
    I wouldn't? Are you sure? Because before you answer for me, I'd like to remind you that you don't speak for everyone.

    While the iPhone does have a very good touch screen, this isn't an option at all times, or to everyone.
    Do you know BLIND people use the iPhone? Yes, they do.
    What about driving? I drive and I use voice control daily. I'm not one of those idiots/dumbasses you see driving and texting/playing with their phones.
    Its simple, press and hold home button. Wait for beep. Say "Call XXXXXX". Done. No slamming into the retaining wall either. :D

    So the answer to your question is, "You may or may not depending on you and your situation. But its great to at least have the option for it".
  11. MikeELL thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2006
    Perth, Australia
    Ack, fair enough. I don't drive often so I tend to forget about that. Still, I think if Apple made a huge song and dance about the including text-to-speech and AI in iOS5, and the only use case was for hands free driving, people could legitimately say that it's been done before.

    I think Apple sees voice control as much bigger than that. They are going to introduce it as their third UI (after mouse/bitmap screen, finger/touchscreen). And they're going to do it on a device which cannot be used any other way: the iPhone nano. And it's going to be awesome.
  12. pruppert macrumors 6502


    Jan 30, 2008
    I think the nuance integration in iOS is going to be awesome. From the sounds of the recent clues to come out of the iOS beta, it sounds as if there will be a dictation button standard on the keyboard. So in iOS 5, when the keyboard pops up in safari, you can just hit that button and state your search term instead of typing it. Or dictate your macrumors comment, or an email, or a pages document instead of typing it. It sounds like this will be possible system-wide from a text-to-speech button on the keyboard. In that case I would use it all the time.
  13. dontwalkhand macrumors 601


    Jul 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    I guess you've never have used a Bluetooth headset. Don't think for everyone as I heavily use Voice Control
  14. boss.king macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2009
    A voice-only UI would be awful. You want to send a text at a concert? Too bad, the phone can't hear you. To be honest I think (and hope) that you have it wrong, because many people would love greatly improved voice commands on iPhone, not only for driving either. Imagine your eating a burger/messy food and someone emails you, simply tap a button and speak the reply without needing to clean your hands. Also, enhancing the current commands would be great. I don't use voice commands for songs anymore because it doesn't recognise my accent or artists names.

    In short, this feature would have lots of great uses.

    EDIT: on a side note I hope they make the current voice commands less intrusive.
  15. MikeELL thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2006
    Perth, Australia
    Ack - you're all missing my point. Again, I'm sorry - I shouldn't have dissed voice control and it's uses on current devices. There is definitely a segment of iOS power users who use this a lot and I'm sure Apple would get a huge cheer if implementing text-to-speech with good AI was *the* feature.

    Nothing about that was anything to do with the point I'm trying to make, which is that it opens a whole new input option on devices with touchscreens which are too small to use for certain functions.

    I'm not saying it would be a voice-only UI. What I'm saying is that IF Apple decided to make an "iPhone nano", I'd argue it's going to look something like the current iPod nano with the current touchscreen interface and no developer apps. It will have only a little inbuilt memory (uses your iCloud), and can access the web (reads your safari reading list to you) and can read pdfs/ibooks etc out to you. Being unable to text in noisy environments would definitely be a disadvantage, but it's not like Apple hasn't made compromises in the name of making things smaller before. With luck, their AI enhancements will be able to make out what you're saying in spite of some background noise. I for one would definitely get one. :)
  16. boss.king macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2009
    Oh I see, I was confused by this
    I hope they don't make an iPhone nano (and I'm very confident they won't) because they could just implement the exact same thing in a regular iPhone. I'm hoping strongly for enhance voice features, like universal speech-to-text.
  17. MikeELL thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2006
    Perth, Australia
    *So sure are you?* (/end Yoda voice) :)

    The decades-long trend towards ever smaller phones not make you think twice before writing that? I mean it's not like Apple has ever been obsessive about making things smaller/simpler before. :rolleyes:

    Seriously though, when I said it couldn't be used any other way, I meant that in the same way that while a PC can be used without a mouse/trackpad, it is definitely meant to be used with one. The only reason phones haven't gotten smaller than they are is due to increased demand for functionality, and the fact that you can only make a button so small before you can't press it accurately. Intelligent voice control could solve both problems.

    Many people I know think the iPhone is too big. I don't see Apple creating something only slightly smaller. The idea of an iPhone nano has been bouncing around for a long time. Will it happen this year? We'll see.

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