Interviewed in ZDNet, Craig suggests that voice-activated search is not so far away. Recall that his model was, at one point, Star Trek. Google Labs has a rudimentary application based on this idea here. And, as I noted yesterday, Opera has integrated it already into a version of their browser (using IBM speech technology).
Silverstein said he believes that within a few years Google could have a voice interface for everything from driving directions to help you finding the aisle for a particular food in your local supermarket.
“That’s something you would never think to ask a search engine. You’re not likely to be using your laptop in a supermarket, but in the future I think search will be far more accessible — you won’t be tied to your desktop, you will be able to do it from your mobile phone or PDA — and you’ll start to see search used in fundamentally different ways. The kinds of things people want information about when they are walking around or sitting in a bar is very different to what they want while they’re at home,” he said.