Poor, neglected Google Voice

2016-01-17 2 min read

      Nearly all the conversations with my family is in Russian and phone calls are no different. The fun happens when I miss a call and it goes to voicemail. Turns out that despite the amazing job Google does in transcribing English calls it fails terribly at Russian. Instead of realizing that it’s not English it ends up with transcriptions such as “douche nozzle booster.”

      Google Voice Russian transcription

      Given Google’s expertise in machine learning and their massive data sets I’d expect them to at least be able to identify a non-English language. My guess is that Google Voice is no longer a priority and may not even be under development at all. I had a little over a hundred unread messages I needed to mark as read. With Gmail you get the option of applying an action to the entire selection - not just what’s visible - but with Google Voice you have to go through it page by page. And there’s no way to include more items per page. A tiny bit of modern web functionality did make it through though and I was able to use shortcuts to get the job done relatively quickly. I realize self driving cars are both more exciting and have more potential but I wish there was something being done to improve Google Voice - there’s a ton of us still using it.