I've known my wife for five years now, and I still struggle to remember her phone number. The only numbers I know are those I can recall from before getting my first mobile phone, and since I have lost touch with nearly everyone from back then, that has largely been reduced down to immediate family members. For everyone else, there's a People app, and all I've had to do to dial them is start typing their name. Now I don't even have to make that much effort. If you join the Google Search field trial, you can find a contact's information simply by asking your phone. Just say or type "Cameron's phone number" or "What's Cameron's address" and watch Search work its magic.

Search1 Search2 Search3

Search currently summons your Gmail contacts, but Google's magicians are hard at work conjuring up a method for pulling down Google+ contacts as well. Like casting any good spell, you have to recite things precisely right for this to work. If Search just can't make out what you're saying, try manually teaching it your contact by adding a phonetic name.

Be sure to read the fine print before joining the trial. Search won't just pull information from your contacts, it will search your Google Drive for relevant documents, Gmail for relevant messages, and calendar for scheduled events. Granted, Google already searches through much of these things to dish us ads. Still, anyone who feels queasy after seeing how much information Google can pull down is free to leave the field trial at any time.


Also, this is US-only for the time being. Sorry.

Source: Google+

Bertel King, Jr.
Born and raised in the rural South, Bertel knows what it's like to live without 4G LTE - or 3G, for that matter. The only things he likes sweeter than his tea are his gadgets, and while few objects burn more than a metal phone on a summer day, he prefers them that way anyway.

  • David Margolin

    thanks for this

  • guyfromtrinidad

    Can you guys put US only in the title, it would save me valuable time. read the whole article got excited, hovered over the link and then saw the dreaded US ONLY

    • http://about.me/joanjimenez Joan JD

      But... but... The pageviews!?!

      • guyfromtrinidad


      • wlmeng11

        But... but... Adblock?

    • Datorz

      Works great for me in Europe, just join the field trial and set your phone language to English US :)

    • nerdy

      It is a U.S. based site!! Deal with it.

      • guyfromtrinidad

        It may be US based but it has an international audience, and they cover a lot of international stories.

  • Israel Lai

    darn the states...

  • Lexster

    Does it take time to get going? It's not working for me after I signed up.

    • Kenny O

      Small Print - " you will receive an email confirmation from Google when your account is ready (and possibly other update emails during the trial) but note that we may not be able to activate the experiment for everyone." :-)

      • Lexster

        Ahh...yeah, missed that part. Thanks.

  • Faraz Baig

    Put US only either at the title or at the beginning of the article. After signing up I scroll down to see US ONLY.

    • arabian nite

      or realize it is a U.S. based site. Thanks.

      • Toblerone

        Actully no, they are an international siste. They cover news from Canada and Europe aswell (and the rest ofta the world). Therefore - international.

        • imtoomuch

          Reading comprehension...

          arabian nite said it is U.S. based not that it only covers U.S. news. Lookup the domain. It's based in California. Last time I checked, that is the U.S.

          • Toblerone

            Based on that Facebook is an US site only (and Swedish since a couple of weeks ago). But we all know that isn't true... the servers location dosen't really matter - the visitors and the information on the site does.

  • Jack black

    Cool but Samsung's S Voice does this already. Perhaps not as nice but still works

    • Kenny O

      I just bought my wife a GS4, I have to admit that S Voice is pretty good and was spot on accurate in the tests I ran. I really like the wake up from lock screen feature, that is something I really wish Google Now would implement

  • Nasko Hristov

    Please in the future, start with that it is for US only, thanks.

    • Happy4th

      No offense, but being that the site is a U.S. based site YOU and EVERYONE else that makes dumb comments like this should realize that it caters to U.S. users.

      AP should only make a qualifying statement when it affects people outside the US, not the other way around. Deal with it.

      • Nasko Hristov

        I am just saying, how about you to read something let's say sweet and then this: ?

      • guyfromtrinidad

        Offense taken, the site has a global audience and I never get the feeling that they only cater to a US audience

    • UmmmNooo

      How about find an android website that is local to you so you can see things that are relevant to you and quit complaining. Are you going to complain that this site doesn't do news related to your 3rd world telecom company?

      • Christopher Lee

        While I agree with the sentiment, that last comment was way out of line. For one, Europe and many parts of Asia (particularly SEA) are hardly in the "third world" -- for another, there's no reason to insult developing countries.

        Have a little respect before you launch your comments into the Internet.

        • UmmmNooo

          But But...how can I troll then?!!?!

          Loved you in Lord of the Rings!

      • Nasko Hristov

        Wow that is really offensive comment, you are not right about the site, I think that it is international, and I am here because "here the things happens first". Beside US is not the world, or am I wrong? Jesus we are all people on this planet. I am not in 3rd world country and I still feel how to say...forgotten or abandoned?

    • imtoomuch

      Please don't. It should be assumed that a contest is U.S. only unless otherwise stated. This is a site based in the U.S.

      • Nasko Hristov

        Really, really, you want to get rid of non-US viewers? And where is said that the site is US-based?The fact that it is in English doesn't mean US only.

        • http://j.mp/scottbeamer Scott Beamer

          Well the URL doesn't end in .co.uk or .com.au or .co.za or .ca or .de....

  • fonix232

    I don't know about the other commenters, but I just applied for it without problems, and I am currently in Denmark. Account was registered in Hungary.

  • Will Dutton

    weirdly i'm in the field trial and i'm not in the US i signed up months ago with no problem, maybe they changed the requirements, or maybe i used a vpn or something i dont remember now

  • Simon Belmont

    I tried it and it's pretty fluid on how you ask for information. I suppose that's the natural language processing at work.

    It always returned the pertinent address or phone number despite variations on how I asked it. Very cool feature.

  • Snakebites

    Are you sure you have to join the field trial? Cause it works on my nexus 4 without joining.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      That's what Google said at least.

      • Snakebites

        I don't know if anyone else noticed this, but if you say "what is (person's name) address" instead of without "is" it brings up the full contact card.

  • James Ellis

    Not for Google Apps accounts....sigh...

  • Chris

    or just use the people app.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      You can search by voice by clicking one microphone button from the homescreen. That's the beauty of this. It's awesome on the go.

  • NateCress

    However, it only shows one phone number, email address, address, etc. even if you have multiple for a contact. It doesn't tell you types (IE: Phone instead of Mobile or Home or Work).

  • Paul_Werner

    Best line in this whole thing:

    "Like casting any good spell, you have to recite things precisely right for this to work."

    You all should warn people that adding a phonetic name puts them in a different order in the People App (if you have sort by first name like it is by default). Not sure why the phonetic name does this but it's good to know

  • DuncanPerkins

    I don't know Cameron Summerson so this is pointless for me

  • Joshua Talley

    I wish that I could train Google to correctly understand my wife's name in voice recognition. "Shana" !=Jane, Shane, Shannon, James, etc.

    • http://www.facebook.com/robertalyon Robert Lyon

      Yes man. I wish we could train words as well!!!!