Dictionary.com gets voice-to-text definitions for Android, iPhone

It's hard to look up a word you can't spell. Dictionary.com updates for Android and iPhone now match definitions to your voice search.

True story: The other day I was looking up onomatopoeia on Dictionary.com (don't ask.) Let's just say I didn't quite get all my vowels lined up right the first time; trial and error ensued.

Next time, I won't have to toil so for my vocab payoff. A new voice search feature on Dictionary.com, releasing today for iPhone and Android, will let you speak your search term into the app.

This is a boon for anyone voted least likely to win a spelling bee, or for anyone else who prefers to skip the typing.

Voice-to-text shows up in the app as a separate function on a separate screen. This isn't a bad interface decision, but placing it on the search bar as Google does its Android search widget would make it much more accessible.

In addition to voice search, the update let you revisit definitions in a list of favorites. It also brings a feature where you can click a word to get a definition, customizable backgrounds, and for word nerds, sharing on social networks.

Dictionary.com has been downloaded over 20 million times on the iOS, Android, and Blackberry platforms. The updates will surely make the app richer on the former two; we hope BlackBerry users have a chance to benefit as well.

About Jessica Dolcourt

Jessica Dolcourt reviews smartphones and cell phones, covers handset news, and pens the monthly column Smartphones Unlocked. A senior editor, she started at CNET in 2006 and spent four years reviewing mobile and desktop software before taking on devices.