Google is working on its very own Siri clone and recently some details about this project have leaked out. Keep in mind that Google already has something kind of like Siri, known as Jeannie, that can provide Personal Assistant services on Android phones. Jeannie, formerly known as Voice Actions, uses Google’s Speech Recognition API, but she pales in comparison to Siri when it comes to natural language processing. Jeannie will only respond to a set of very specific commands. And it is this aspect that Google is working to improve in a project that is codenamed Majel. Majel is named for Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, the actress who lent her voice to the computer interfaces onboard Federation starships on Star Trek.
Matias Duarte from Google further elaborated on the link between Majel and Star Trek previously in an interview with Slashgear:
[quote]Our approach is more like Star Trek, right, starship Enterprise; every piece of computing surface, everything is voice-aware. It’s not that there’s a personality, it doesn’t have a name, it’s just Computer. And you can talk to it and you can touch it, you can interact with it at the same time as you talk with it. It’s just another way to interface with the computer.[/quote]
It is rumoured that Majel could be released as early as this year, although this year is rapidly disappearing, so an early 2012 release may be more realistic. The initial release is expected to only allow you to perform Google search queries, with more advanced functions being added later on.
Source: Android and Me