Google expanded it’s toll-free local search to Delhi region a few days back and as expected (and discussed),
..is in the process of automating the voice search service and is collecting voice and dialect samples from users in Hyderabad and Delhi. “In case the automated service cannot recognise the user query, it is further assisted by a call centre employee, but we do not intend to build the call centre operation [ source]
So essentially, the toll-free is a way to train their voice recognition engine (which is what I mentioned in the last post as well) and Google will be able to deliver the results via sms/email.
Local search is becoming an interesting market and am sure the entire dynamics will change in the next few years – the play is data + technology and the oldies (i.e. justdial and other call center based services) will face tough challenge from new technology players.
What’s your opinion?
Recommended Read: Yahoo’s voice search in local accent.
Startups in voice recognition space; ubona, mscriber