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Google is working on a way to control TV sets by voice

Other major companies such as Apple, Microsoft and Sony are pursuing similar technologies.

February 21, 2012|By Nathan Olivarez-Giles, Los Angeles Times
  • Google TV software includes a feature that allows viewers to search the Web using voice commands spoken into a handset.
Google TV software includes a feature that allows viewers to search the… (David Paul Morris, Bloomberg )

Ever yell at your TV? Well, someday soon, it's going to talk back.

In what could be the biggest boost to couch potatoes since the remote control, Google Inc. is developing a technology that would allow a viewer to tell a TV, by voice, to change the channel or even seek out a favorite show or movie.

No more having to get off the sofa to look for a remote. Soon, TVs may even reply to your commands, like the new Siri-enabled iPhones.

The first steps of making all this a reality are already being taken by some of the biggest names in the tech industry: Google, Sony Corp., Samsung Electronics Co., LG Electronics Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Apple Inc.

The Google TV software, available on set-top boxes and Internet-connected TVs, includes a feature that allows viewers to search the Web using voice commands spoken into a handset.

Apple has long been rumored to be working on what has been unofficially dubbed the "iTV," a television set that could use the iPhone's Siri technology to find TV shows or channels on demand.

No word, though, on whether it will be able to comment on who wins "The Bachelor."

nathan.olivarezgiles@latimes.com

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