24
Oct
dragonassistant

For years Nuance's Dragon served as a leader in the world of voice dictation and commands. More recently, though, as Google and Apple move in on the speech control world, the company has a more pressing need than ever to distinguish itself. Enter Dragon Mobile Assistant. This app aims to "expands the natural language understanding and artificial intelligence" of Dragon Go! and "[add] the most popular personal assistant features."

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At this point, most of our readers are probably aware of how voice assistants work. This one isn't much different from the usual fare. You can speak commands to set up appointments, make calls, send texts, and perform searches. One distinguishing feature is that once you've entered a search request, you can slide a bar to the left and right to run it through a variety of services including Google, Wikipedia, eBay, Twitter, Amazon, YouTube and more. It's not quite the intelligent queries we've been spoiled by lately, but it's certainly flexible.

There is also a driver mode that allows the app to listen passively for commands and read messages aloud to you so you can listen and respond without taking your eyes off the road. Though, to be perfectly honest, that passive-listening feature sounds nice outside the car. Hey Google, you think we could get some of that?

Nuance Reveals Dragon Mobile Assistant

Immediately Downloadable in Beta for Android, Dragon Delivers Elegant, Intelligent Mobile Assistant Experience

Burlington, Mass. – October 24, 2012 – Nuance Communications, Inc. today announced the beta availability of Dragon Mobile Assistant for Android.  Dragon expands the natural language understanding and artificial intelligence capabilities first showcased as part of the successful Dragon Go! application.  The Dragon Mobile Assistant sends texts, makes calls, sets appointments, and delivers direct access to open content on the mobile web from more than 200 content providers.

“Consumers loved the original Dragon Go! and wanted even more”, said Michael Thompson, executive vice president and general manager, Nuance Mobile, “So we totally redesigned the experience in a conversational way and added the most popular personal assistant features.”

For example, people can say:

·         “Tell Natalie, ‘I’m on the way to the office and will grab you a Starbucks’”

·         “Schedule a meeting for 2 p.m. tomorrow with John Smith”

·         “Get directions to the New England Aquarium”

·         “How’s the weather look this week?”

·         “Send out a new Tweet, I can’t believe that finish to the game!”

Dragon also offers a hands-free personal assistant experience.  Simply wake up Dragon by saying “Hi Dragon.” Or, listen to inbound text messages in Driver Mode.

“Nuance is investing deeply in Natural Language Understanding and conversational dialog technologies”, said Vlad Sejnoha, chief technology officer, Nuance, “We will continue to add new innovations to the Dragon Mobile Assistant to explore what’s possible, and to push the limits of intelligent voice interfaces across all mobile form factors, including phones, tablets, PCs, cars, and televisions.”

Availability

Dragon is available in beta for free in English on Google Play in the US, supporting Android Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0) and above, with expanded availability and new features planned before the end of 2012.  To download Dragon, visit https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.nuance.balerion.

Dragon Mobile Assistant joins Dragon Dictation, Dragon Go!, Dragon Drive!, Dragon TV, Dragon ID, Dragon Voicemail to Text, and Swype as part of Nuance’s portfolio of voice, touch and natural language understanding innovations that are defining a new generation of personal assistant technologies.  To learn more, visitwww.dragonmobileapps.com, or join the conversation atwww.facebook.com/dragonmobileapps or @DragonMobileApp on Twitter.

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1039082010 Ryan Allen Young

    *sigh*, none of those passive listening options on any of the assistance programs have got it right yet. I use my phone as an internet radio device in my car, and all the passive listening functions mute or muffle music services. If only someone had one that sampled the audio output, compared it to the mic input, and then was able to distinguish between voice commands and the output stream. So I could say, "galaxy, next track" or "galaxy, navigate, nearest wells fargo........ yes, that's correct" and actually have a hands free experience.

    • mesmorino

      While I agree with everything you've said, I can't help feeling it's going to require true A.I. before I'm really satisfied with voice assistants.

      Absolutely none of the voice assistant things out there understand what they're listening for, they're just comparing sounds to a database of similar sounds, and then executing a function depending on how close the match is- If unsure, ask the user

      I have no idea if this is how it's actually done so all you software engineers calm down. I'm just saying, I would prefer the phone to actually be able to parse what I'm saying, and the actual time it only asks me to repeat a query is when it hasn't heard me (as opposed to when it doesn't understand).

      When the phone is smart enough to understand me I'm more likely to ask it random questions like "How big is the sun", and get every parameter related to the sun's size. Pulling the phone out and making an appointment on the calendar or doing a google search myself is not only faster and more discreet, I'm also extremely less likely to look like a dork when I talk to it and it asks me to a) repeat the command, b), doesn't know how to spell "luminaire", and c) fails due to a loss of signal

    • http://jasonhowell.net/ Jason Howell

      That could be done by sampling the output stream and inverting the
      phase, then mixing that with the audio input that the app interprets. The reversed phase could
      get rid of most of that output stream leaving just the sounds in your
      car. So yeah, it's totally possible to do at least THAT part.

  • Gav456

    Definition of irony:
    Supports only 1 language - English... Not available in England (shame)

    • http://www.Mikereviews.co.uk/ Mike Brown

      Damnit!

  • DennisHeffernan

    Not compatible with my stuck-on-Gingerbread Atrix and not compatible with my Excite 7.7 because, I dunno, it's only for phones?

    • Asphyx

      Yep I think it may be phone only because My Xoom running Team EOS Jelly Bean isn't compatible either.

      • http://www.facebook.com/Shinakuma George Millhouse

        yup not tablets

    • http://www.facebook.com/Shinakuma George Millhouse

      it clearly says ICS or Jellybean

      • DennisHeffernan

        Yes, I can read. The Excite 7.7 runs ICS.

  • bungadudu

    Not compatible with the GS3

    • btod

      yes it is, at least with verizon's gs3. I've downloaded and used it already.

    • IncCo

      you're probably just in the "wrong" country

  • wolfkabal

    This is one of the first apps (not counting games) that simply slows to a halt when trying to run on the Epic 4G (GS I). Shame, I'll have to wait until I upgrade to see if it truly functions as intended.

    • http://www.facebook.com/Shinakuma George Millhouse

      it isnt meant for that phone its meant for phones that use ICS or Jellybean...not some out of date hardware you decided to rom

      • wolfkabal

        Thank you very much for informing that my hardware is yes, out of date. I'm runing CM10 on the phone, last I checked that was fairly recent. Don't assume!

  • defred34

    I would appreciate it if somebody could get the APK out. Artem, if you could help, awesome! Shame a lot of apps these days are becoming US-only.