There truly seems to be no end to the new, innovative and sometimes downright weird features that Google is coming out with these days. Perhaps the team at Google is bored and trying to find ways to fill the days. Whatever the reason, the latest strange innovation is called ‘Handwrite.’ It is designed for use on smartphones, mobile devices and tablets that have touch screen.
This new feature seems a bit odd when you consider how voice recognition technology was designed for the purpose of freeing up our hands so that we could use our voices to communicate to Google exactly what we are searching for. For example, you could be driving a car and ask Google for directions (just make sure you pull over to read them!) Now we have essentially taken a step back, and Google is giving us a new way to use our hands and fingers to enter queries into Google. Handwrite brings hands back into the process, but eliminates the need to type any characters on a keyboard. So let us break this down: you do need to write, but you don’t need to type.
Google representatives contend that this new feature is practical for those moments where you are in a situation where you have a moment to write on your mobile phone or tablet screen with your finger but you do not have the time to actually type something out. Instead you activate the Handwrite tool in the Google Search settings panel and then you are ready to go. Just remember that if you are too slow with your question Google will start to search before you have finished entering it. If you do use cursive, you also need to be quite quick and quite precise. If you scribble too sloppily, you will end up searching for something random that you didn’t intend, and if you scribble too quickly you may suffer the same fate.
The video below shows Handwrite in action:
This is a pretty cool idea actually, but who knows how to write in cursive anymore? Using a stylus may work better than a finger, it remains to be seen how accurate this will be. This may be a cool way to keep younger children distracted as they can learn how to write out simple words.
The Handwrite feature is available in 27 different languages, so perhaps there are a bunch of countries out there where cursive is still the standard. One thing that does make this an attractive feature is that when you type into a smartphone with a touch screen, the pop up keyboard covers a fair share of the phone and it can be a bit difficult to see what you’re writing. With Handwrite you will no longer have to deal with that annoyance ever again.
If you want to try it out, go over to Google on your tablet, smartphone or mobile device and change the settings to enable Handwrite. Have fun!