Google’s Voice Search service is now available in 13 new languages

by on August 17th, 2012

Google is now offering its Voice Search service in 13 new languages, Google Product Manager, Bertrand Damiba announced in an official blog post.

Voice Search was earlier available in 29 languages, and today, Google is adding support for 13 new languages—bringing the total to 42 languages and accents in 46 countries. The 13 new languages that Google Voice Search now supports include Basque, Bulgarian, Catalan, European Portuguese, Finnish, Galician, Hungarian, Icelandic, Norwegian, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak and Swedish.

“Each new language usually requires that we initially collect hundreds of thousands of utterances from volunteers and, although we’ve been working on speech recognition for several years, adding these new languages led our engineers and scientists to tackle some unique challenges. While languages like Romanian follow predictable pronunciation rules, others, like Swedish, required that we recruit native speakers to provide us with the pronunciations for thousands of words. Our scientists then built a machine learning system based on that data to predict how all other Swedish words would be pronounced,” Google explained.

The Voice Search feature has already started to roll out for the new languages and will continue to be done over the course of the next week.

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