Current Issue
This Month's Print Issue

Follow Fast Company

We’ll come to you.

It seems the tech world can't get over the idea of controlling gadgets with a human voice, despite the fact that it's never worked well in almost any iteration. The latest voice-controlled hopeful is a device called the Muso, from a little company called DirectVoxx. The Muso's purpose seems honorable enough: connect to your Apple [NASDAQ:AAPL] iPod or iPod nano via the multi-purpose port on the bottom, and let a user use natural voice commands like "lemme hear some Beyonce" to control their music selections. The only catch: the dongle costs $160, which is $10 more than the starting price of an actual iPod nano. And it's huge.

The lack of a voice-control application is a hole in Apple's App Store that several tech bloggers have hit upon — apparently, the iPhone doesn't allow programs to access its iPod functionality — but an oversized docking device with a fat pricetag probably isn't the right approach. While DirectVoxx's orientation towards natural language is admirable, one can imagine few scenarios where controlling an iPod with voice commands is so imperative that it would be worth doubling the size and cost of the iPod itself.