Chronopost International Chooses Elan Sayso
TOULOUSE, FRANCE - Chronopost International has chosen Elan Sayso, a text-to-speech technology from Elan Speech, a provider of speech technologies, to speech-enable their new Customer Service Voice Portal. One of the services available on the portal allows customers to track and follow the itinerary of the many 200,000 packages and documents that Chronopost International ship each day in 220 different countries. The service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. By using speech technologies instead of pre-recorded speech and touchtone (DTMF) and by creating a gateway between the Website content and the voice portal, Chronopost International has enhanced its customer information service. Since January this year, Chronopost International has been capitalizing on their Web tracking service that they are now able to offer to their customers over the telephone with a fully voice-enabled interface. The customers are prompted to speak the reference number of their package. They are then guided through the service by text-to-speech and speech recognition technologies. The text-to-speech engine, which can vocalize any text-based information, reads out the greeting message and all other information in real-time with a pleasant and intelligible voice, which adds value to the service. "Chronopost International systematically captures the reference number of the packages and documents, from the moment they are picked up right through to delivery to the interested party, to make sure they can be located at each and every stage of transit. This information has been available on our website for years now. To access it via the telephone, we just had to create a VoiceXML gateway, with integrated text to speech and speech recognition technologies, between the web platform and telephone portal." Explains Nathalie Gueguen, Director of the Innovation Department at Chronopost International. Before concluding: " Including integration and testing, the investment was quite reasonable and took no more than 100 man-days. As a result, we have a strong value-added service for our customers" The first version of the automatic package tracking telephone service had required a large investment in time and was amortized in six months. This time, Chronopost International expects Return On Investment to be even shorter. Chronopost International chose the Elan Sayso Text-to-speech for its capability to convey written information in a particularly natural and intelligible voice. This technology offers an audio quality that has never been so close to studio recordings and breaks away from monotonous side of the best speech synthesis systems currently on the market. By deploying Elan Sayso in such a 'visible' service, Chronopost confirms the success of the Sayso technology that has already been deployed in several mass-market services such as the telephone access to the latest news from AFP, a well-known French News Agency and France's leading financial newspaper; Les Echos.