Vangard Extends Its Voice with Nuance Engine

Vangard Voice Systems has partnered with Nuance Communications to power voice-enabled enterprise mobile applications, the companies announced yesterday.

Vangard's Mobile Voice Platform (MVP)—which enables IT organizations to add voice capabilities to existing mobile applications—will leverage Nuance's VoCon 3200 speech engine to deliver voice-recognition for existing device-, Web-, and server-based mobile applications.

“We’ve developed our tools to the point to where we’ve made it very, very easy with our rapid development environments to use the VoCon engine as a true voice-enabler for data input for mobile applications,” says Bob Bova, Vangard’s president and CEO. “And, again, we’re not dependent on a network connection and we’re not server based—everything’s done on a handheld, so that’s something that [Nuance] finds very, very compelling.”

Using the Vangard-Nuance combination, enterprises can use a single voice platform to voice-enable all existing mobile applications, including, task management, field services, field sales, and inspections.

According to Bova, the pairing also provides for increased capability in terms of expanding the marketplace for speech-enablement: “[It’s] truly a way for Vangard and Nuance to work together to provide solutions to businesses and companies that own their own mobile applications.”

Vangard selected Nuance’s VoCon 3200 for its accuracy, speed, and support for more than 20 languages worldwide.

“For me, it’s a matter of relying on Nuance to continue to provide what we consider the best recognition engine there is,” Bova says. “They continue to add capability to it. It continues to go up in terms of its ability to recognize different types of dialects…and they continue to do a wonderful job of perfecting that engine. And they continue to make it smaller and more compact, and that’s particularly interesting for mobile applications…”

The ability to voice-power any existing mobile enterprise application with MVP will enable IT organizations to use voice to gain productivity and accuracy and to optimize existing business processes.

“Our ability to connect the Nuance engine to these applications without having to be host or network resident dependent allows them to use their voice engine in a way that I don’t think anyone else is providing for them,” Bova says. 

Bova notes that he always hopes people remember two things about Vangard: That they are not dependent on a network and that they don’t reside on a host.

“We do true voice recognition to software applications on a handheld device,” he says. “And I think the message is finally starting to trickle through.”

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