Google Assistant Adds Voices In Nine Countries

Google is launching a new voice is nine languages: German, French, Japanese, English in the United Kingdom, English in India, Norwegian, Dutch, Italian, and Korean. Previously, those countries only had one voice, while English speakers in the United States have 11 voices to choose from. The voices were built with WaveNet technology from DeepMind, which aims to make the virtual assistant sound natural and human-like in terms of pitch and pacing. To change the voice, users from the nine aforementioned countries need to go into the Settings section on the Google Assistant app, according to a recent blog post from Google written by Brant Ward, a Product Manager for Google Assistant.

Google Assistant Adds Voices In Nine Countries
Google Assistant Adds Voices In Nine Countries

Before users choose which voice they prefer, they will be randomly assigned a voice when they initially set up the Assistant with two options available. Ward wrote in the blog post,

“A lot of people are surprised to learn that they don’t always stick with the voice they’ve been using, so give it a shot. You might just find one that sounds even better than the one you’ve been using.”

Related: Google Assistant Announces Polish Updates

Google Assistant: The Smartest Voice Assistant?

Although Google Assistant is the second most popular voice assistant behind Amazon’s Alexa, it performed better than Alexa and Siri in an “IQ” test from Loup Ventures. While the Google Assistant answered questions correctly 92.9% of the time, Siri followed at 83.1%, while Alexa came in last at 79.8%. In the same vein, Google Assistant understood queries 100% of the time, compared to 99.8% and 99.9% from Siri and Alexa, respectively.

The test’s questions surrounded everything from local information to navigation and commands. Google Assistant improved by 7% compared to a Loup Ventures test from last year, while Alexa improved by 18% and Siri by 5%. As Apple, Google and Amazon are constantly updating their voice assistants with new voices, languages, skills and data, it is expected that all three voice assistants’ performances will improve over time.

Aliza Vigderman

Aliza Vigderman

Aliza is a journalist living in Brooklyn, New York. Throughout her career, her work has spanned many intersections within the tech industry. At SquareFoot, a New York-based real estate technology company, she wrote about the ways in which technology has changed the real estate industry, as well as the challenges that business owners face when they want to invest in property. At Degreed.com, an education technology website, Aliza created digital content for lifelong learners, exploring the ways in which technology has democratized education. Additionally, she has written articles for The Huffington Post as well as her own content on Medium, the online publishing platform. Aliza’s love of journalism and research stems from the excellent Journalism program at Brandeis University. At Brandeis, Aliza interned as a research assistant at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism, a non-profit “news room without walls”. There, Aliza was paired with an investigative journalist and used academic databases to obtain data on everything from the suicide rates in Bhutan to local Boston court cases. Her last position was as an account executive at Yelp, educating business owners on the power of technology to increase revenue. Throughout, however, her heart remained with tech journalism, and she’s thrilled to be writing for Security Baron. When she’s not keeping afloat of the latest tech trends, Aliza likes to cook, read, and write. A former high school “Class Clown,” Aliza has completed two feature-length screenplays, a pilot, and countless comedic sketches. On her days off you can find her relaxing in Prospect Park, trying the latest flavors at Ample Hills Ice Cream, and spending time with friends and family.

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