During the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, ZTE announced a brand new partnership with Nuance that will bring the company’s famous voice recognition software to ZTE’s upcoming smartphone family. The first devices to offer voice interaction will be launching this year, with support for more than 25 different languages and a new “Car Mode” app designed for use behind the wheel.
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This is the original Parrot Asteroid Classic car stereo head-unit ($349), and it made quite a splash when it launched last year. The single-DIN, 4×55 watt receiver boasts a formidable array of features: Bluetooth connectivity, powerfully accurate voice recognition for both calls and music, a GPS receiver, a bright, 3.2-inch LED screen and a quiver of apps that run off its customized, upgradeable, early-vintage Android 1.5 OS (all of which require a data connection via a dongle).
Though this model was originally called the the Asteroid (no Classic), the Classic nomen was added to lessen confusion as three new models were announced a few months ago. However, the Asteroid Classic still very much in play; in fact, as this review goes live, the Classic is the only member of the Asteroid family currently available, as its new siblings haven’t shipped yet.
With its Android-based OS, you’d be forgiven if you thought the Asteroid Classic was more friendly to Android phones than the iPhone. In fact, the opposite is true, as I’ll explain later. And while it suffers from something that can probably be described as teething trouble, it’s still a lust-worthy system.
Nuance is a leader in voice recognition applications, and today at CES, they have announced their latest application Dragon Go! for Android. Dragon Go! allows users to use voice commands to access and control over 200 leading services such as Spotify, Yelp, YouTube, AccuWeather, ESPN, Facebook, Fandango, Last.fm, Pandora, Twitter, Wikipedia, and more. No more wasting time and fumbling with your device’s keyboard, simply speak a command or request and watch as Dragon Go! executes it.
Apple’s new Siri assistant has really revolutionized the way in which we interact with mobile devices using our voice. It’s no wonder, then, that rivals are scrambling to introduce their own alternatives. Google already has one for Android, according to some reports, called Majel, and it’ll debut during the first quarter of 2012.