New Service Lets Consumers Listen to the Web's Top News
BuzzVoice has announced a new mobile voice service that lets consumers listen to more than 1,400 text-based Internet news sources on the go.
When users sign up for the service—a process that takes less than a minute to do—they create a playlist in which they identify the types of news stories they would like to read. BuzzVoice automatically collects breaking stories based on their preferences and, using NeoSpeech’s text-to-speech engine, converts them to audio in real time for listening on the go.
“The news engine collects the content, NeoSpeech converts it to voice, and our engine feeds it to the user’s device,” explains John Atkinson, co-founder and CEO of BuzzVoice, which is based in Cincinnati. “The conversion all happens on our servers in real time.”
The service is compatible with the iPhone, iPod, most MP3 players, and computers. Users can stream the service in the car, on the train, at the gym, or anywhere. “It’s something for everyone on the go who wants to keep up with the news,” Atkinson says.
In addition to its audio features, the service allows users to view story text, images, and video. Users can also share the news audio feeds with friends via email or post them to social media sites like Twitter or Facebook. “This way, whether they subscribe to BuzzVoice or not, anyone will be able to listen as well,” Atkinson says.
"The key benefit of our service is personalization and convenience,” Atkinson says. “People are increasingly busy, and finding the news you're interested in can take a lot of time. With BuzzVoice, the news you care about comes to you, and you can listen to it while you do other things."
The company's first-generation platform was known as PimpMyNews. Launched about a year ago, the service has been used by more than 250,000 people, according to Atkinson.
The new service offers significant enhancements, including additional real-time features, a "BuzzRadio" hands-free streaming feature, and talking email alerts.