Baidu Tips 'Voice-Centric' TalkType Android Keyboard

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Designed specifically for speech input, the app supports speech-to-text or swipe input, while the QuickShare feature lets you quickly post things like GIFs and points of interest.

"As speech recognition continues to make dramatic improvements, it's natural that speech will become a more and more popular way to communicate with devices," Baidu chief scientist Andrew Ng said in a statement.

With QuickShare, you can browse, search and share GIFs from Giphy, restaurants and places from Yelp, and share your current location right on the spot. Microsoft in August added a similar search feature to its Word Flow keyboard app.

"TypeTalk is the first full-function Android keyboard that is 'voice first,' not 'voice also,'" said Bijit Halder, head of Baidu's Silicon Valley AI Lab product team. "Unlike conventional keyboard designs, where voice is targeted for occasional use and delegated to a small icon, TalkType is designed for voice as the primary input mode."

At the app's core is Baidu's speech-recognition engine, which uses deep learning to listen to, interpret, and convert a user's dialogue into digital text. Folks can also use voice commands like "comma," "period," "question mark," or "exclamation point" to punctuate sentences, according to TechCrunch.

The free app is now available to download from the Google Play store.

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