Google’s voice search on Android now works much smarter for those who are bilingual.
With the update to version 3.6, you can speak to it in any of your languages without having to rifle through the settings. Previously it only recognized one language at at time and required changing the default in order to speak another tongue.
Enabling this new feature does take a one-time adjustment. Head to the search settings, select Voice, and then Languages to select the boxes of what you want to speak. Search now handles up to five languages at once from among the 50 available.
After performing this step Google’s voice search should begin recognizing what you say in any of the languages you have selected.
If you do use a different language the response may still be in your primary language, however.
For example, I spoke the name of the popular Mexican soccer team Chivas de Guadalajara and got a short explanation about it in English. Also, the weather commands were rather hit and miss in Spanish, sometimes providing the Google Now weather card and other times not.
A blog post by engineer David Eustis says more language responses and additional features are to be added over time. It appears that some work to tighten up how Google understands and interprets the diverse set of languages it recognizes is also necessary.