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Google Now finally lets you refer to people by relationship

Posted: , by Michael H.

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Google Now finally lets you refer to people by relationship
If you've ever tried to use Google Now voice commands to call someone with a more unique name, you may have run into the limitations of voice commands. Simply put, not everyone has a name that is easily understood by voice command systems, although voice recognition is getting better faster than people are coming up with new names.

Luckily, Google has finally added a feature which will allow you to use your relationship descriptor in order to reference someone. This means you can say "text my wife" or "call mom" and it will know who you mean. Of course, you may need to set it up and tell the system who those people are the first time; Google isn't assuming anything. As of right now though, there doesn't seem to be a way to edit the choices you make; so, try not to get a divorce before Google adds that feature. 

Also, the system isn't quite as smart as you may want it to be. It falls prey to similar issues that you would have with Siri in this regard. For example, if you have someone set as your "mom", you can refer to that person also as "mother", but it won't work if you say "mommy" (or "mummy" depending on your accent). If you say "call mommy" it will claim to not know who that is and ask you to set that relationship every time, but the person you pick will be accessible by saying "call mom". So, certain terms still don't work right, but at least you can set it up for multiple same sex parents or siblings. Additionally, even shortened terms don't really work, like saying "call my bro" or "call my sis". In those cases, we found that Google Now will either think bro means dad and sis means mom, or it will ask you who you meant, but not assign that person to the term. 

So, just be aware of those issues and you should be all good. Anyone with Google Now should be able to use this feature right now, because this looks like a server-side update, not an update to your Search app.

source: +Google

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posted on 11 Feb 2014, 15:59

1. LiyanaBG (Posts: 377; Member since: 07 Nov 2013)


cool i like

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 16:02 2

2. vishu9 (Posts: 251; Member since: 03 Mar 2011)


"As of right now though, there doesn't seem to be a way to edit the choices you make; so, try not to get a divorce before Google adds that feature."

jajajaja.. Good one Michael.

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 16:03 3

3. uchihakurtz (Posts: 277; Member since: 12 Nov 2012)


Will "Text my hommies" work? Lulz, this is nice.

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 16:37

6. XperiaOptimusOne (unregistered)


Voice commands has definitely come a long way, in a few extra years this will probably work flawlessly. Great job Google!

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 17:04

7. 1701nino (unregistered)


Ahh google now is finally catching up to siri.

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 18:33 5

10. wilsong17 (Posts: 1094; Member since: 10 Mar 2013)


lol really its the other way around

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 17:21 6

8. Mr.Mr.Upgrade (Posts: 425; Member since: 30 Aug 2011)


1701nino? Google now is way advance then siri,its faster , reliable, helpful, and always gives you suggestions

posted on 11 Feb 2014, 18:10 1

9. _Bone_ (Posts: 2140; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)


This is still incredibly, shockingly last century. My dozen yo LG could recognize names based on prerecorded voice tracks, but I cannot teach Google Now a name that's non-English?

Larry Page cannot call Sundar Pichai via voice command, how's that?

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