Google held their “cool new mobile features” special event today. Two main features were announced: Voice Actions and Chrome to Phone.
It looks as though the speculation of an Android Video Calling application or “Find My Phone” app didn’t come to fruition. However, Voice Actions are a welcomed surprise. Voice Actions allow the user to simply speak what they want their Android device to do. Possible Voice Actions include:
send text to [contact] [message]
listen to [artist/song/album]
send email to [contact] [message]
go to [website]
note to self [note]
navigate to [location/business name]
directions to [location/business name]
map of [location]
Check out the video below for a full demonstration of this awesome new feature.
The downside? Voice Actions are only available for devices running Android 2.2 Froyo. This limits the device range to the Motorola Droid 2, which was launched today with Voice Actions preloaded, and the Google Nexus One, which was recently discontinued. However, many Android devices are slated to receive a Froyo update. This includes the HTC EVO 4G, Motorola Droid and Motorola Droid X among many others. Check for it in the Android Market once your device is updated with Android 2.2 Froyo.
The second Google announcement today was that the Chrome to Phone app, which has been available since May, is now official and available to all users running Android 2.2 Froyo. What does this app do? If you have the Google Chrome web browser on your Mac or PC, websites can be pushed from the computer to your Android device. Additionally, websites such as YouTube and Maps open in their respective apps. Though not quite as exciting as Voice Actions, it is still a unique and useful feature. Chrome to Phone is currently available on the Android Market for Android 2.2 Froyo users.