Jul 23rd, 2015

Google Voice voicemail transcription

Google’s Voice’s voicemail transcriptions have long been laughable at best. We’re not saying it wasn’t a great idea. The only thing we hate worse than actually receiving a voicemail is being forced to listen through the entire thing. While humans don’t have quite as much trouble figuring out what someone else is saying on the other line, carrier’s piss poor call quality served to only confuse Google’s robots. It’s 2015 and even I have trouble figuring out what people are saying on my cellphone (thankfully, we are seeing some improvements here).

Awhile back, Google actually allowed Voice users to submit some of their messages so Google could better improve their transcription algorithms, aka long short-term memory deep recurrent neural network. Looks like it worked, because they’re announcing that today, voice transcriptions now feature 49% less suck. Google says they’ll continue improving this number over time, so this is only the beginning.

Those of you already on Google Voice or who recently signed up for Project Fi can enjoy the benefits right now. Be sure to let us know if you see any improvements. The last voice mail we received was from back in ’09 and we’d like to keep it that way.


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