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Stage 2 of voice recognition software takes search to a new level

It has been described as a search engine on steroids, but Wolfram Alpha creator Stephen Wolfram says that his web design and software project is still evolving.

And while some people may argue the tool is only suitable for high-end industry users, its popularity among Apple iPhone 4S customers is quickly disproving this theory.

New figures show that almost 25 per cent of all Siri users are responsible for directing traffic to Wolfram Alpha, with a high number of people accessing information about day-to-day tasks via the communications and technology tool.

Mr Wolfram, who initially came across some criticism from other providers, is keen to build on recent gains and is rolling out stage two of the "computational knowledge engine".

"Step two, the next step of what can be done with this approach," commented Mr Wolfram, while announcing the rollout of Wolfram Alpha Pro.

Partnerships with industry heavyweights such as Apply and Microsoft have introduced this technology to an international audience, but it is not just friends in high places that are responsible for its burgeoning popularity.

Instead it is the tool's point of difference among competitors Google and Bing that is attracting more and more users.

Unlike its competitors Wolfram Alpha does not employ the use of algorithms to browse the web and list options, favouring the results of its curated database – a feature that has its share of supporters, with reports suggesting that half a million users visit the site on a daily basis, placing it firmly in the top 5,000 online websites.

If you haven't heard of the web's latest information hothouse and want to add semantic understanding to your general searches, then it might be time to add asking Wolfram a question to your list of things to do today.

Posted by Aimee McBride