by Al Sacco

iPhone Google Mobile App w/ Voice Still MIA…Apple Strikes Again

Nov 17, 20083 mins
Enterprise Applications

Google, your friendly global search giant, on Friday started touting a new version of its popular Google Mobile App for iPhone that includes voice search functionality. Google even posted a nifty video clip of the voice-powered iPhone app in action, flooding the Web with stories and blog posts on the software, which was expected to launch last week. The only problem: Apple reportedly still has not given its final approval, and the app isn’t yet available in the iTunes App Store.

As of 1:20 PM EST today, Google Mobile App with voice still isn’t listed for download on iTunes. And frankly, that’s just fine with me.

Google Mobile App With Voice on iPhone

Voice activated search for smartphones and mobile devices isn’t new; I’ve been using two different BlackBerry apps with voice search—or at least they’ve been installed on my device–for months now: Yahoo oneSearch with Voice and Microsoft’s TellMe 2.0.

I used each application for about a week before they found their way to the bottom of my applications list. And that was for good reason: neither is particular helpful to me. Sure, the apps eliminate the need to type in search queries, but you still need to locate the application on your device, launch it and then physically activate the search function before you can do anything with either piece of software.

In other words, you still need to perform three separate physical clicks before you can search, which greatly reduces the value of the voice-activated apps.

As you can see from the video clip above, Google Mobile App with voice attempts to address this issue by using the iPhone’s accelerometer to tell the application when to activate search. This sounds like a novel approach, but I think I’ll wait to get my hands on the application before I sing its praises. My iPhone rarely sits still for more than a second at a time, especially when it’s in use, so I’m not exactly sure how the device will know when I want to search and when I’m simply shakin’ my thang to the latest The Killer’s tune.

Anywho, the real details behind the delay in getting Google Mobile App with voice into Apple’s App Store are still largely unknown: but reports suggest that Google believed that Apple had bestowed its thumbs up upon the app last week. There was apparently a miscommunication somewhere along the line, and Google became the next iPhone developer to feel the wrath of Apple’s dreaded App Store approval process. is now reporting that the new voice-activated Google search app for iPhone will hit the App Store today, though it’s unclear when.

I’ll be checking in frequently, and will be sure to update this post as soon as the upgraded app becomes available on Apple’s iTunes App Store. (Link opens iTunes.)

Until then, I’m curious about your experience with voice search. Do you think the technology has legs for consumer or business users?