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Google's Siri-a-like to be named 'Majel' after Trek actress

Software that acts human named after human acting like software

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Google are working on a voice-recognising Siri-beater say the blogs, and it's going to be called Majel. Google phones have had voice control for donkey's years but the Majel app will be better than the old stuff says a Google insider quoted on AndroidandMe.

According to blog's unnamed source, the new app will sauce up Google's current Voice Actions service with natural language programming. That will allow users to speak to their phones normally without having to phrase their commands in a particular way. The source also implies that Majel will come from Google's secretive Google X lab, where crack teams of programmers work on new products. And sometimes on products that allow Android to catch up with Apple.

The name Majel comes from Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, the actress best known as the voice of the Federation Computer from Star Trek.

Google this week bought a software company called CleverSense which provides a virtual assistant called Alfred. Alfred uses different search engines and services to provide answers to user questions, but doesn't have a voice recognition component. But it's possible that with some grafting and modification, Alfred could form part of the basis for Majel.

The product is tipped to arrive soon - likely sometime in January or February, and it's believed new features will be added after launch. ®

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