Is SoundHound’s Hound voice recognition app too good to be true?

4 Jun 2015

Could SoundHound be about to blow the powerhouses of Apple’s Siri and Google’s Google Now voice recognition software out of the water with Hound? The internet certainly thinks so.

In the past few days, the company founded in 2009 has caught the attention of many corners of the internet, in particular Reddit, for a YouTube video appearing to show that their Hound voice recognition app is about two generations ahead of the mainstream competitors.

For the last number of years, accents and speech have time and again been raised as issues among Siri, Google Now and Microsoft’s Cortana, but this recent video shows Hound’s founder & CEO, Keyvan Mohajer, appearing to speak at high speed.

“How many days are there between the day after tomorrow and three days before the second Thursday of November in 2022?” is just one of the questions posed to Hound at blistering speed, which it appears to have no issue with whatsoever.

It even calculates a person’s mortgage if you have the basic information.

Of course, the sceptic will immediately squint their eyes at the sight of technology that appears to be leaps and bounds above the industry standard created by companies with more money being thrown at this technology than sense.

Since this video, the app has released in beta form in the US on Android and, from independent reviewers, it appears to be pretty darn close to what Mohajer had demoed himself.

As one reviewer Tim Schofield describes, its ability to answer multi-faceted questions appears to be very much real, but some aspects of it, such as its maps, which would just crash when loaded, are less than perfect.

As it expands into full release on both Android and iOS, it looks as if Apple and Google have some serious competition ahead of them.

Hound running with stick image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic