Facebook has confirmed it testing a new feature for its messenger app that automatically transcribes any file sent as a voice recording and lets the people send voice messages to each other. The feature has been rolled out to select users for testing, but no date has been mentioned for a global launch.
The new tool allows users to send an audio clip, by tapping on the microphone icon, record the message and send. It listens to the full audio clip and then posts a typed message below the audio.
David Marcus, Facebook’s vice president of messaging products, stated that the social networking site has an ambitious roadmap for 2015 and plans to have more than 500 million monthly users. The new tool has begun testing voice-to-text transcription, based on machine-learning technology. The feature is expected to see a good response in Asian countries, where typing in some languages can be difficult, he added. However he declined to comment on when the feature will be rolled out globally, stating that the system will improve at different rates in different languages depending on number of users. Read: UC Browser partners with Facebook to give real time notifications to Indian users
David Marcus, stated, "We are always working on ways to make Messenger more useful. Facebook offers a feature that lets people send voice clips to their friends without having to type the text."
"Today we are starting to roll out a small test that helps people read the voice clips they receive instead of having to play them out loud," he said in a statement. ‘Our plan is to test this feature at a tiny scale for now and we’re looking forward to seeing what you think of it before making the experience more widely available.’