• September 1, 2010
  • By Leonard Klie Editor, Speech Technology and CRM magazines
  • FYI

Microsoft Continues Its Pledge to Speech

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NEW YORK (SpeechTEK 2010) — As part of a lunchtime keynote August 3, Microsoft Speech General Manager Zig Serafin and Chief Scientist Larry Heck gave a clear statement of their commitment to speech and multimodal technologies. Speech, they said, was part of a “natural user interface.” As a sure sign of that, they mentioned the upcoming release of the Windows Mobile 7 operating system, which will include in-network speech services to allow users to control their Windows-based mobile devices through voice commands. 

These technologies are similar to those already supplied by Google for its Android-based phones, and now Nuance Communications is weighing in. 

According to an email, Nuance has long been offering these capabilities to all major mobile manufacturers and carriers, as well as the automotive and consumer electronics industries. 

“Nuance has been powering innovative speech capabilities for years across all mobile platforms—Android, Apple, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, and other proprietary operating systems,” wrote Mike Thompson, senior vice president and general manager for Nuance Mobile, in the email. “Most recently, we’ve seen incredible success with our connected speech platform with the debut of the Genius Button on the T-Mobile 3G Slide, where users speak naturally to the phone to make calls, search the Web, get directions, send texts and email, and more. These high-profile deployments and the millions of downloads of our Dragon Dictation App prove that mobile speech has reached its turning point in the mobile industry—and this is only just beginning.”

Thompson did acknowledge, however, that “Microsoft’s announcement…about its plans for the Windows Mobile platform is simply additional affirmation for the critical role speech is playing in mobile interface innovation.”

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