OS X Lion May Support Nuance

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Hints of Nuance were spotted in an OS X build. Image: MacRumors (click to enlarge screen)
Last month we heard that Apple was negotiating with Nuance to bring voice recognition to iOS 5. Looks like that partnership may have formed, as hints of Nuance's voice recognition software were reportedly found in OS X Lion and the latest internal iOS build.

MacRumors found a few iOS screenshots posted on twitter by hacker/tech enthusiasts @Chronic and @SonnyDickson that show on/off switches for "Nuance Dictation," "Nuance Long Endpoi..." and "Mic on space key."

If the screenshots are genuine, voice recognition software could be a core function of future iOS releases. The feature would make Apple's operating system more competitive with Android, which already supports voice recognition software.

Nuances' RealSpeak shows up in OS X Lion. Image: 9to5Mac (click to enlarge screen)
On the OS X Lion front, 9to5Mac in May noticed new voice options in Lion's system preferences that it thinks is Nuance's RealSpeak software. The website was hoping for a joint announcement between Apple and Nuance and WWDC. That obviously didn't happen.

Based on the findings, it seems safe to assume that Apple is at least talking with Nuance. It's hard to say when or if these features will make their public debut.

It all depends on how reliable these sources are. MacRumors seems to stand behind @Chronic and @SonnyDickson saying the two have "been known to have legitimate sources in the past."

On a related note, @Chronic is also telling MacRumors (and the Twittersphere) to expect the rumored MacBook Air refresh this Wednesday.

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At a Glance
  • Apple OS X Lion (10.7)

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