Nearly every member of the Pocketnow team uses digital personal assistants in some way. Whether it’s Google Now, Siri, or Cortana, these systems offer voice commands, as well as personalized recommendations based on contextual information like location or emails. But while each service has its own unique features that set it apart from the others, none of them offer the same kind of fully fledged, natural language-based voice interface found on services like Wolfram Alpha.

SoundHound recently demoed a new product, simply called Hound, that seems to offer similar functionality to these services, with a Wolfram-like command input. You can say anything, from simple requests like “Show me pictures of cats” to complex queries like “What is the population of the capital of China, its area code, and its area in square miles and square kilometers?” and usually get back equally complex answers. It’s a powerful system with a lot of potential, and while it’s currently in closed beta, we’ve got our hands on it for our first impressions!

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