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Wednesday, 2nd January 2008

Quick Users Guide: Voice Search Comes to Ask.com Mobile Directions, Speak Your Directions and Click

New stuff from Ask.com Mobile Search follows. Like we do with all Ask.com posts, click to read the full post. As many of you know, Gary is Director of Online Information Resources at Ask.com

Ask.com Mobile Search accessible on a mobile device at http://m.ask.com now offers driving directions using your voice. It's very cool. It's powered with technology from the well-known DIAL D-I-R E-C-T I-O-N-S service.

The Ask Mobile Voice entry service is free (of course, the cost of a call, mobile web, and text message are all dependent on your plan) and is available without having to download and install any application(s) on your phone or mobile device.

Here's how it works:
1) Go to http://m.ask.com on your mobile browser.
2) Select Directions (Voice Entry)
3) Dial the Telephone Number Provided
3) Respond to the prompts. You can say a specific street address like Chicago, IL, 444 North Michigan, Chicago, IL or use an intersection like Powell and Geary in San Francisco, CA. Then, do the same for your destination location. In some cases you might also be prompted to give a more specific location. For example are you looking for 435 N. Michigan or 435 S. Michigan.

Presently, directions are only available for the United States.

4) In a matter of seconds, a text message (SMS) will arrive with a link to your directions. Click and you are done. The address or intersection you've spoken will be filled into the search boxes on Ask Directions. No typing needed. It's easy to think about how this technology can be used not only with web search but also in a library.

The directions themselves are available in a "traditional" list format or turn-by-turn (T-b-T), one step at a time. Of course, both driving and WALKING directions are available. T-b-T directions also include colorful visual cues (example: arrow pointing left) to make the directions even easier and faster to understand.

No mobile browser? You can use the emulator to check out the Ask.com Mobile Voice Entry service.

You can also use the DialDirections.com service by dialing DIR-ECTI-ONS. You don't need a web browser but you will need to be able to receive SMS text messages.

Other Voice Search Services?
There are several and more coming. These posts (1 ||| 2 ||| 3) lists several. For example, TellMe (now a part of Microsoft) has been around for many years and offers business listings, movie showtimes, and much more.


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