SingTel Turns to Novauris for Local Search Product

SingTel, the leading phone carrier in Singapore, partnered with speech technology firm Novauris to deliver a voice search application tailored for the unique language, vocabulary, and cultural traits in Singapore.

The unique style of English spoken in Singapore, combined with a vocabulary drawn from a host of different languages and cultures, meant that merely importing a standard English language speech recognizer would not be enough. By working with Novauris, SingTel succeeded in launching a fully localized voice search app called deF!ND.

With deF!ND, users can get details of virtually any restaurant, shop, or other business in Singapore just by speaking its name. Users imply have to speak the words and the app searches SingTel's extensive InSing database, taking its knowledge of the user's location into account, and displays on the best choices. .

"We have put in a lot of effort to ensure deF!ND is able to recognize Singapore English, and this differentiates it from other voice recognition apps in the market," said Terence Lai, director of mobile advertising at SingTel. "We are delighted that deF!ND has been a hit with Singaporeans."

Novauris president and co-founder Melvyn Hunt explains: "English spoken in Singapore is markedly different from Western forms. Some of its properties are more typical of East Asian languages. For ASR purposes, we had to treat Singapore English as a new language. In addition, we had to study and incorporate pronunciations of local place names and food items as well as names from the four corners of the world. We are delighted to be working with SingTel and look forward to exploring possibilities in other countries where SingTel operates."

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