While audio and video content continues to grow in volume online, text-based web pages still account for the bigger chunk of the web. That is why today, Google announced that it has added a new feature to its Go search app which will allow you to access online text content more conveniently.
Google introduced the preview version of the app in India and Indonesia late last year. It is designed to let you search the internet without consuming large amounts of data. The new web page reading capability enables the search app to read aloud text in billions of web pages in 28 languages.
The new feature is especially useful in instances where you need to do multiple tasks such as listening to your favorite national daily while cooking in the kitchen or hearing out a news roundup while commuting. It is even more helpful to people with visual disabilities or to people studying foreign languages.
Google Go's reading capability uses natural language processing and speech synthesis artificial intelligence to identify which important portions of a web page to read out loud. And it does so in a natural sounding voice, Google noted, even on poor internet connection. Since the app is less than 5MB in size, it consumes only a small amount of cellular data, so it provides a smooth way to access the web in underserved regions.
Google said it plans to add the ability to listen to web pages to its other products and services in the future.