Hound is just one of the handful of different voice assistant applications available on Android, alongside powerhouses Google Now and Cortana, along with various other third-party applications from many smaller developers. Hound was introduced to the public from the team behind Sound Hound, the music recognition application for identifying songs playing on the radio, and was first only available in a beta form, having opened up to interested users as of June 3rd last year during the private beta. During its initial release to beta members, Hound began to showcase some rather impressive functionality and after a week or more following the private beta launch, Hound was put up against Google Now, Cortana, and Siri to compare performance and features.
Some months later as it’s now the third month of 2016, Hound has finally exited the private beta status and is now available to all users as the app has just launched on the Play Store. If you’re not familiar with Hounds earlier exploits from last Summer, not to worry as it isn’t too much different from Google Now in what it’s capable of doing on a broad scale. What makes Hound so impressive is its ability to take your questions and feed you back a quick response and then allow you to follow those responses up with even more pinpointed questions.
For example, you could ask Hound to show you nearby coffee shops and once it brings up the list of results, you can follow up that request with another that asks Hound to show you coffee shops which are open after a certain time of the day that also offer free WiFi, you could even potentially throw in another factor like results which only offer milk alternative options or also serve food for instance. It’s these contextual responses (with surprisingly accurate details mind you) which could make Hound a viable option for some users as opposed to Google Now’s baked in functionality, or perhaps as an addition to what Google Now offers. Its strengths are definitely its speed and vastness of response, but users will have to be OK with the less human sounding voice than what’s offered by Google Now as Google has made more recent strides in making their voice prompts sound more normal. If you’re interested in giving Hound a try, you can grab it from the Play Store.