Google‘s Gemini Recorder summaries can’t be too long or too short, and this limitation has garnered attention after some exciting behavior was pointed out by Twitter user Andreas Proschofsky and shared by Mishaal Rahman. Upon testing, it was discovered that Gemini Nano, Google’s lightweight version of its multimodal AI platform, will not summarize a transcript if the recording is under one minute long, displaying an error message stating, “Transcript is too short.” On the other hand, if the recording exceeds 15 minutes, the notice will inform the user that the “Transcript is too long.” Google suggests that medium-length transcripts work best for their summarization feature.
Gemini Nano, which powers enhanced Smart Reply in Gboard and summaries for Google Recorder, utilizes safety features to block harmful content during transcription. Although the exact criteria for harmful content are not disclosed, Google’s Generative AI Prohibited Use Policy, linked in the terms of service alongside these summaries, identifies dangerous, illegal, or malicious activities, misleading or misinforming content, and sexually explicit content as primary types of violations to be prohibited.
When a recording falls within the ideal range of 1-15 minutes and does not contain harmful content, the AI summarization feature proves helpful. Tapping the Summarize button on the top of the transcript tab triggers a bottom sheet that provides information about the quality. Pressing OK on this sheet prompts another bottom sheet, which notifies the user that the Recorder needs to download a 1GB AI model. Once the download is complete, a summary of the recording appears as bullet points above the transcript.
While these summaries may not be groundbreaking, they serve as a valuable tool for students and professionals. Having the main takeaways readily available at the top of transcripts is a significant quality of life-enhancement. However, the 15-minute upper limit poses a limitation in real-world use cases, as many recordings may exceed this duration. Nonetheless, Google’s Gemini Recorder summaries offer a convenient and efficient way to extract critical information from smartphone recordings.