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Google is rolling out some new Google Search features designed to help you pronounce words correctly. Google already has some impressive language skills, but the combination of visual cues and the ability to practice pronunciations takes things up a notch.
Learning to Pronounce Words Correctly
There are thousands of languages spoken around the world, and each of them has hundreds of thousands of words. Therefore, it’s impossible to know all of the words even in your native language, let alone a second or third language.
When you encounter either a new word or one you’re not familiar with, you may search online for how to pronounce it. And Google will invariably help. However, Google Search is now getting a couple of new tricks to help you pronounce words correctly.
Google Learns New Language Skills
Google details its new language skills in a post on The Keyword. The first new skill is an experimental pronunciation feature which lets you practice your language skills. The second is the addition of visuals designed to give context to words and their meanings.
The pronunciation feature lets you practice saying the word you’re having trouble with. After you Google “How to pronounce anemone” for example, Google will show you the correct pronunciation as usual. However, you’ll now also see a Practice button.
Click this, and you can say the word into your microphone. Google will then mark you using speech recognition technology and machine learning. Depending on the way your pronounce the word, Google will offer feedback on how you can improve.
Google will now also provide visual representations of the words you search for. This is designed to help visual learners, and will be especially helpful for words with multiple meanings. Google is starting with nouns, with hopes to expand in the future.
Will the Babel Fish Become a Reality?
The option to practice your pronunciations of words is available in American English now, with Spanish following closely behind. The visual cue cards are also available in English now, and across all language translations. This is mobile-only for now.
Google is upping its game when it comes to language skills. As well as these new Google Search features, Google Maps can now translate place names. It surely can’t be long until the Babel fish from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy becomes a reality.