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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Arc Search from The Browser Company was today updated with a new "Call Arc" feature that's designed to let you conduct a search in a gesture that mimics a phone call. To use the feature, open up Arc Search, raise the iPhone to your ear, and ask a question.

The gesture of raising the iPhone to your ear activates the search option, and answers are provided verbally, so the entire voice-based search experience makes it look as if you're simply talking on the phone.
Arc Search now has voice-activated search, triggered by holding your phone to your ear and saying your query -- just like you're making a phone call. Upon using Call Arc, you'll instantly hear your search results, accompanied by an animated smiley face! You can also click "Read More" to access full Browse for Me results for each query.
After asking a question, Arc Search will play hold music briefly before providing a verbal answer and standing by for another question. The interface of the voice search resembles a phone call interface with a smiley face, an end call option, and a "speaker" option to have results spoken aloud.

Arc Search first launched in January as search app that incorporates AI to present search results in a curated, easy-to-read format. It has a minimalist browser interface where users can conduct a standard search or use the "browse for me" option to get an AI-summarized list of results to a query, similar to what you might get from a Chatbot.


Browse for Me is powered by large language models (LLMs) from OpenAI and others, and there's also a "pinch to summarize" feature that works with any webpage and an option to enable a reader mode to get rid of cruft on websites.

Arc Search is available for free on the App Store and requires iOS 16 or later. [Direct Link]

Article Link: Search the Web With a Phone Call Using This New Arc Search Feature


macrumors newbie
Sep 23, 2009
This is weird UX.
Probably a way to quickly get a proof of concept AI model out that allows secure processing on a remote server without having to invest much time to build it. I bet it was a "hackathon" type project that the company was like "hell yes, this will generate buzz while we bake it in fully." Pretty neat low effort AI solution if you ask me.


macrumors 6502a
Jan 8, 2021
lol @ the comments from folks that have never used Arc Search.

"it's just chatgpt" is hilarious comedy.

The coming productification of LLMs is going to soon give you dozens of things you're going to have to say that about every single day. "meh, it just uses Anthropic".
As an Arc desktop user, over Safari, Arc Search still has a ways to go before it replaces Safari on my iPhone. The most innocuous queries are declined for me, at least once biweekly. Earlier this month I searched how to disable a feature in Brave for mobile, declined. It's not like the guidelines exclude competing browsers lol.


macrumors 6502
Aug 24, 2017
I guess the devs at Arc thought "what if we made a Siri voice search, but like... more flamboyant?" ☎️
  • Haha
Reactions: coolfactor


macrumors 601
Jun 9, 2021
This is actually kind of cool. It works surprisingly well.

And I like that you can change the app icon to resemble the old Netscape Navigator icon.

You can change your default search engine to Kagi or Perplexity.

And now that it has desktop tab sync it's a lot more useful.

I was kind of skeptical but I've been using Arc on the desktop, and there's a lot to like here.


macrumors 68040
Aug 14, 2007
I guess the devs at Arc thought "what if we made a Siri voice search, but like... more flamboyant?" ☎️

You can make Siri more flamboyant by changing up which voice it uses. I like British voice #4. Doesn’t make it any smarter, however.
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Reactions: Victor Mortimer
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