Will Google's Voice Search Ever Get Approved for iOS?
August 29, 2012
By Rory Lidstone
, TMCnet Contributing Writer
Earlier in August, Google officially revealed that it was bringing the updated version of its search app to iOS. This updated search was said to be the same recently introduced in Android (News - Alert) 4.1, which includes a number of upgrades — most notably voice search. This addition of voice management technology was seen as a somewhat bold move by some, since a voice search app would directly compete with the iPhone 4S' key feature, Siri.
Obviously, many wondered if Google's (News - Alert) voice search app would ever be given approval by Apple to appear in the App Store. Apple has a reputation, after all, for defending its products and putting them first above all. Also, the recent feud between Google and Apple (News - Alert) as competition in the mobile market heats up has gotten to the point that Apple will no longer pre-install Google apps in the upcoming version of iOS.
While there hasn't been any official word from Apple, it's been about a month since Google submitted its voice search app to the App Store for approval, leading many to believe that it will never see the light of day on iOS.
This wouldn't be the first time that Apple rejected or stalled approval of an app which, by its standards, "duplicated core functionality" of the iPhone (News - Alert). While this is indeed Apple's right, it's a bit of a loss for iPhone users as it robs them the choice of which voice search app to use. Furthermore, Google's voice search is a bit different from Siri and, by many accounts, works much better.
Perhaps most importantly is the fact that Siri is only officially available on the iPhone 4S and the latest iPad, meaning users of older iOS devices are left in the cold in terms of voice search functionality.
To be fair, Apple hasn't officially rejected Google's voice search yet, so maybe there's hope yet. However, Apple, as always, has grand designs and if forecasts like a recent one from ARCchart is correct, nearly two billion mobile phones will feature some form of voice control by 2016. Apple just wouldn't be Apple if it didn't try to ensure that most of those mobile phones were using Siri.
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Edited by Allison Boccamazzo