With typing and voice search already under its belt, Google's aiming its search sights on another target: handwriting. With a simple setting activation, you can now hand write your searches on your iOS or Android smartphones and tablets, and like magic, it'll scour the Web based on your scribbles.
Called Handwrite, Google's new way to search is really just a novelty. Google's blog says that being able to write your own searches out anywhere on the screen is great because a keyboard doesn't cover up half the screen, there's "no need for hunt-and-peck typing" and that when you're in undesirable situations (like a bumpy taxi ride), Handwrite would come in handy (no pun intended).
But does it work? It depends on your device. I tested it out on my iPhone 4 in Safari and Chrome and my penmanship rendered much smoother and faster than on a Galaxy S III in Chrome and the stock internet browser.
My favorite feature is that Handwrite can recognize cursive. Now, that's nice! I'm just a cursive kind of guy.
Still, Handwrite doesn't feel like a feature that I'd reach for over typing or voice search. It's definitely not for everyone. At most, it's a gimmick because you still need to press a button for spaces and deleting.
To try it for yourself, goto Google.com and then click "Settings" at the bottom of the page. Then enable "Handwrite," click "Save" at the bottom of the page and you're done. To start searching with your hand writing, click the little cursive "g" at the bottom right corner of the Google.com homepage and start scribbling away.
Oh, and make sure your smartphone is running either iOS 5 or Android 2.3 Gingerbread or newer and your tablet has iOS 5 or Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or Handwrite won't work. Cheers!