Speech Recognition technology is available for many years, still its impact has been quite low so far. Windows has speech recognition features that nobody use, speech-to-dial is available in mobile phones since years. Few people configure it, and less of them ever use it. Only Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems have been adopted in call centers to dispatch calls automatically depending what the callers answer, to despair of many who hate talking to machines.
Why such poor adoption? People still feel uncomfortable talking to machines, on one side because they feel ridiculous, and on another because few trust it will work. No one wants to voice-dial a a friend, and accidentally find you are calling your boss on a weekend. Or find that after you explain to the IVR your problem, the human agent that attends you later needs to hear the explanation again.
Why Google Speech-to-Search could make it though the Chasm? There are some niche applications that can make people get used to speech recognition. And Speech-to-Search can be one of the them. Voice is a convenient input for search while on the go. And unlike voice-dialling, the risks of mistakes are negligible. If it fails, just google again, anyway searchs take only milliseconds. Using voice to command Windows seems like a too difficult task. Using voice only for search from your mobile seems simple enough for me to get used to it. And the search results are customized to your location. Watch the video found via CrunchGear, and judge for yourself if compelling enough to go mainstream.
Reference Post: Check if Google Mobile App meets the criteria to be a Killer App: Searching for the Mobile Killer App
Update: The video seems to have been made private along the day. Was it a leakage from Google team? or a new way of viral marketing. Nothing gets a wider and quicker distribution than a disclosed secret.
See the picture via TechCrunch.
Update 2: Mike Arrington reports that something went wrong and Apple did not publish the Google application in the App Store, forcing Google to remove the video.
Update 3: Now it is official. Google Mobile App is available for iPhone. See a new video clip in Google Official Blog.