— -- Another hidden feature has been discovered in the latest beta of iPhone OS 3.0, this time in the form of voice recognition and voice synthesis. The software is nicknamed Jabbler and will be built into the SpringBoard application, the software that controls the home screen, launches other applications, and will be the basis of the new Spotlight search feature. Jabbler will likely have voice functionality similar to the software bundled with the latest iPod Shuffle, i.e. a computerized voice reading off playlists and other textually-based content.
Sources close to iPhone OS 3.0 told Ars Technica of this advancement, but it has yet to be confirmed by official Apple sources. Since the voice software was built into the latest iPod shuffle, and Apple tends to carryover advancements into new products (like the "shake to shuffle" feature officially announced for iPhone OS 3.0 that appeared on the latest iPod Nano), all signs indicate this rumor is true. The ability to control voice features via the iPhone headset is also rumored.
Voice control features will bring the iPhone up to speed with many other phones that come with voice-dialing, and will broaden the playing field with a voice search function like the Google app. It'll also be great for turn-by-turn GPS navigation, eBook reading capabilities, and on the spot note-taking.