Apple’s Siri is rumored to be on its way to OS X, but Google now offers some impressive voice input features on the desktop through its Docs software. The company has announced the online-based Docs has been updated with new voice recognition software, going beyond the basic text entry feature introduced last September, and now supporting commands for editing and formatting as well. The only limitation at this point is that you need to be using Docs on Google‘s Chrome browser.
There’s a lengthy list of commands users can take advantage of, including adding paragraph breaks, highlighting and rearranging text, adding bullet points, changing text format, and even inserting tables.
Because the voice recognition tech relies on the same processing engine as Google Now, natural language is supported.
Google says the feature is available worldwide from today. To turn it on users just need to turn it on under the Tools menu. The full list of commands can be found here, with examples including “select line,” “increase indent,” “copy,” “paste,” “delete last paragraph,” and “insert table 10 rows by 3 columns.”
It would be tricky to memorize all the voice commands and their combinations, but it’s still an incredible feature for a popular piece of free software. It’s easy to see it becoming valuable not only for those who prefer to use their voice over a keyboard, but for users with accessibility issues as well.