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Google Adds “Take a Picture” and “Take a Video” Voice Actions to Search

Many Android fans have been waiting for Google to integrate more system options and controls into Voice Search. While turning off WiFi with your voice is still unsupported (we wish it was), a new update for the official Google Search app has us one step closer to full voice integration. Following the update, users now have the ability to take pictures and record videos just by talking to their phone.

To initiate the action in the Search app, all you have to say is “OK Google, take a picture,” or “OK Google, record a video,” and your camera app will automatically fire up. Still unsupported, however, is the ability to actually perform these tasks. Executing the “OK Google” command just launches the camera app, and user interaction is still required for the picture or video to be taken.

For those of you with camera apps supporting picture taking with a keyword such as “cheese,” you can now take a picture just by launching Google Search, saying the command, then stating the keyword. No hands required. Although, you may want to still hold your camera up to capture a good shot.

The update looks to be server-side, as it is working for us on version already. Go try this feature out, and let us know how it goes.

Via: +Google
  • williamjarquin

    It also works if you say “take a selfie”.

  • Higher_Ground

    Hmm, this is going to sound weird but I’d like to be able to change the google now hotwords into a custom phrase. I’d even like to be able to simply whistle or snap and have the phone do something. As awkward as those actions might sound to me it’s sitll a step above shouting “Ok, google”. Likewise I’d like to shorten most of the phrases.

  • Torin

    They might have implemented this so you can control your phone’s camera with an android wear watch

  • Tyler

    This could be cool if it actually took a picture without touch the phone.

  • Dave

    How about some other keyword besides “ok Google?” That would be nice.

  • Nathan Bryant

    But Google Search no longer works for me. It doesn’t listen to what I have to say anymore since I updated to KitKat on my Note 3. Not sure how to fix it.

    • Jacob Mustin

      You’re note 3 must be a woman…

    • jboogie1289

      You’re obviously not with Big Red since your Note 3 is on 4.4 (just had to throw that out there, sorry). Hope this isn’t an issue or that it gets fixed before I finally get updated.

  • Guest

    Who says “Take a video?” It should clearly be “Record a Video” as the screenshot above displays. – Disregard, as it appears to now be working either way.

    • Zee

      saying either one works on my N4.

  • Razma

    i just want to be able to turn on my bluetooth with my voice, i talk to my moto x while it’s in my pocket, and while im driving i tend to forget to turn bluetooth on before getting in and i dont feel like taking my phone out of my pocket while driving

  • You can also say “take a selfie” and it opens the camera app. amazing lol.

    • Tyler

      Was kinda disappointed when it opened up with the back camera. funny nonetheless.

  • Shawn Gill

    I’m thinking maybe they added this for android wear. If you could say “OK Google take a picture/video” to your watch and then you pull your phone out of your pocket the camera is all ready for you. Just a thought. Could be cool

  • T Guy

    worked on nex5, but i would be happier if it actually took a picture instead of just launching the camera app.
    still fun i guess.

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

    Ok Google. Go to the future and get me that Moto smartwatch… And an HTC One.. New

    • AbbyZFresh

      Ok Google, subsidize the Moto 360 to be less than $150. And a Google Glass with no camera for < $250 please.

  • Scott Tucker

    All this does is open the camera app. Why can’t I just say “Ok, Google, open Camera”?

    • Braden Abbott

      On the AOSP camera app it takes another two presses to change from stills to video or video to stills, that and the fact that it remembers the last mode you were on instead of defaulting to stills is annoying enough to make me use this

    • Ryan N

      Hey everybody! This guy gets it.

  • enigmaco

    wish they would enable voice command for bluetooth and wifi that would be great.

  • Ben Murphy

    OK, Google, take a picture, but turn off flash. (Condition: only when in hot yoga class)

    • Michael Little

      They should just turn on the air conditioning.

  • Guest

    Works on my G2. It opens then I use cheese shot to take a picture.

    • feztheforeigner

      You mean you don’t use the whiskey command?

  • Arnold

    Takes almost 3 times as long to take a picture than just shaking my Moto X and tapping the screen. Pass.

    • Mark Mann

      But, but, but voice controls!

      • Arnold

        Stop whining!

    • Guest

      Not on my Note 3. Performs quite well. Just saying……….

  • AbbyZFresh

    What a gimmick.

    Is this how lazy certain Google employees can be to come up with such a dumb idea? Just click the damn camera app. Simple.

    • Jeff Miller

      so here’s an idea….dont use it then!

    • BTLS

      I think it’s just to be uniform at this point and be able to say Google Voice does that much more, and eventually everything. Or for home screen extreme minimalists…

    • Guest

      Isnt it the same principle as the Moto X? shake to open the camera? Cant you just click it?

      • Kevin

        Twisiting your Moto X opens up the camera faster than you can say camera. As for this, I don’t know how long it takes.

    • Higher_Ground

      I just use a nav ring shortcut, and I guess you could even have it as a homescreen gesture. Even then it’s an option on the unlock screen so at some point you have to wonder how many shortcuts to the camera app does one need?
      I think the bigger point was hinted at in the article – do you really need “hands-free” for an action that will require your hands anyway? Unless you’ve got the phone set up in a tripod, you’re still going to need to aim and focus it.