Ask launches Android app for “Q&A-focused web search”

You may well think Ask has gone BONKERS for releasing a search app for a mobile platform based entirely around pushing traffic through a Google text entry box, but the company does think its Android app has a few worthwhile reasons to exist.

Primarily, the Ask app is based entirely around asking questions, with your queries bouncing back both search results and any previous answers to questions it thinks are the same as the one you just asked. This is what it looks like:

ask-android-app-1 ask-android-app-2

It supports voice-to-text for easy entry and apparently there’s also the option so send your questions to a “real user”, plus it encourages regular users to browse the queries of others and suggest answers. Which all sounds a bit too much like “community service” to us.

It’s on the Android Market here – and here’s the press release:

Mobile Q&A Service Combines Search Plus Live Community to Deliver Android Users Immediate Answers to Questions

Ask.com today launched its flagship mobile application for the Google Android Platform, the only app to integrate Q&A-focused web search with timely answers from real people in a single, on-the-go experience. The availability of Ask.com on Android follows the launch of its popular Q&A app for iPhone, which recently passed one million downloads and is one of the top reference apps in the iPhone store. The Ask.com Android app is now available in the Android Marketplace and Amazon AppStore for Android.


“We have placed a big bet on mobile as part of our growth strategy, and it’s paying off with four times the answer rate as our site users,” said Jason Rupp, senior director of product management at Ask.com. “Over the last three quarters there was triple digit growth in traffic from smartphones to the Ask.com mobile site, and 60 percent of that was Android. To win in mobile, you must win on Android.”

Ask.com on Android includes all of the functionality of its iPhone application, with some unique enhancements. Features include:

Voice to text: Simply ask questions, no typing required.

Web combined with real people: Get web results as well as top-voted published answers from other Ask.com users in milliseconds.

Send a question to a real user: Want another opinion? Route the question to a live person in the Ask.com Q&A community, or browse and respond to other users’ questions.

Set it and forget it: Push notifications alert you to when a new answer has arrived.

Personalize Q&A by interest: New for Android users, the app allows you to filter Q&A by topics that match your profile.

Follow feature: Follow users who provide interesting answers, and personalize your Q&A experience with content from these connections.

To download the Ask for Android app, go to www.ask.com/mobile.

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