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Google adds voice search to latest Chrome beta for Windows, Mac, Linux

According to a post on the official Google Chrome Blog, the search and mobile OS giant has added a new version to the latest beta of the desktop-oriented Chrome Browser. The company calls it “Hands-Free Google Voice Search,” which, as the name implies, allows you to perform a search query simply by speaking up and activating the feature with a spoken command.

Here’s how Google’s Ji Adam Dou, software engineer and “Search Whisperer,” spells out the new feature and how it works in the blog post, which you can check out for yourself here.

“If you’ve ever tried to cook and search at the same time – say, when your hands are covered in flour and you need to know how many ounces are in a cup – you know it can be tricky. With the latest Chrome Beta, you can search by voice on Google – no typing, clicking, or hand-washing required. Simply open a new tab or visit Google.com in Chrome, say “Ok Google,” and then start speaking your search.”

Dou says that hands-free voice search for Chrome will make its way to Windows, Mac, and Linux-based Chrome users “over the next few days.” Support for languages other than English will arrive “soon,” Dou says, as well as integration with Chrome OS.

Despite Google’s claims, the fact that you need to open a new tab or head to Google’s home page while in Chrome, doesn’t sound like this feature is completely hands free. With that in mind, it’ll be interesting to see whether this feature catches on with users, or if it gets push to the side and relegated to “gimmick” status.

In the meantime, you can snag the latest version of the Chrome beta here.

What do you think? Sound off in the comments below.

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