Handwriting Recognition in Google Mobile Search

Google has recently come up with a new feature that enables users to write on the screen for web search instead of typing them in.

Known as Handwrite, the new feature enables users to use their fingers anywhere on their touch screen’s device to launch a search.

To add this interesting feature on your touchscreen device, just visit the Google homepage on any mobile browser. On the bottom of the screen, you will see the “Settings” link. Click the link and the settings page will pop up. Now click “enable” under the Handwrite option and go down click the “Save” button. Refresh the browser and the feature will be activated on your device. In order to use this feature on tablet, users will have to click the gear icon and the setting screen will pop up.

“Handwrite enables you to search by just writing letters with your finger anywhere on your device’s screen — there’s no keyboard that covers half of the screen and no need for hunt-and-peck typing,” software engineer Rui Ueyama said.

“If one of the options is what you’re looking for, just tap it to search. For longer queries, you can continue writing and use the arrows next to the autocomplete options to move the right one into the search box,” he added.

It can identify both print and cursive writing format but cursive writing might not be easily translated if a user cannot write well. This feature would help a lot to those who find it hard to type on a touchscreen keyboard or for those with larger fingers that usually type multiple letters on the screen.

Google said the new feature is added to accommodate specific audience rather than replace typing. A user has the option to switch to keyboard at any time by writing on the search field.

The new feature can be found on iOS5+ devices, Android 2.3+ phones and Android 4.0+ tablets, in 27 languages.

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