quinta-feira, dezembro 08, 2016

Android App: "Messenger App for Drivers"

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In the beginning of the universe I was hoping to use messenger to send/receive Google Voice texts and "Google Voice" app to check voicemail. Messenger as a redundant app to send/receive carrier texts is not useful. That's why I started using only text with my "Google Voice" number. The cruz of the matter is that the "Google Voice" app is not very good for texting. The texts are not grouped properly. Texting (or messaging) is meant to be asynchronous. This makes chit-chat possible in terms of having a conversation take place over several days. The "Google Voice" app cuts this chit-chat into many entries that should be placed together. When I ask someone a question about something on Wednesday night, and they don't answer back until Saturday morning, I expect that communication to be contained in just one entry. Fat chance! I think that the "Google Voice" app is only good for voicemail. I also like the transcription and playback without having to "call in" to get it, but that's as far as it goes liking-it-wise.

What about "Hangouts"? I can use "Hangouts" for texting with "Google Voice", but that means  I can't see the voicemail anymore, because voicemail is entered into the same container list as the texts and can't be split. Who was the genius at Google to think this through?? If I choose to use hangouts, then a banner is placed inside the "Google Voice" app (don't forget I' also trying to check voicemail) prompting me to either open "hangouts" or quit using it altogether. I know what you're thinking. Get rid of the banner. Nope! I can't remove this banner. This gets translated into the fact that "Google Voice" app cannot be used in a productive manner, as far as I'm concerned!!! I was hoping to use "Messenger" to send/receive "Google Voice" texts and "Google Voice" app to check voicemail. Forget it!

I actually use my Google Voice number primarily and I did that to keep things less baffling and to keep one number forever, but as of late, Google has just made things more complicated especially since "Google Messenger" does not support "Google Voice". It's ludicrous that I've to get a carrier number to pay for and then use it with free messenger (Google Messenger is even advertising on Google Hangouts for a product that doesn't support Google Voice...!!)

There are now 3 separate google apps for texting and still no good way to do it for Google Voice.

Because of this I decided to make my own messaging app based on the "Google Speech Recognition Engine/API" to be used when I'm on the go (e.g., driving). It's still a work-in-progress. More features in the works to be released in 2017. It's a disgrace that only in 2016 Google opened up its speech recognition API to third-party developers. I'm sure will see Google pricing it at a later date just to fuck us up. Let me enjoy it while it lasts...

For the record, Apple's virtual assistant Siri’s voice recognition capabilities pale in comparison to Google’s. We've yet to see an API for developers to use the Siri tech in their own apps. Not that I'm thinking of switching to the crappy dark side...I much prefer staying on the good side, even with all Google's shenanigans in place...

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