Franklin Electronic Publishers Selects Babel's TTS Engine

MONS, BELGIUM - Babel Technologies S.A has announced that Franklin Electronic Publishers Inc. (AMEX:FEP), developer of electronic reference books and language learning, is embedding Babel's Text To Speech (TTS) technology, PocketBabil, to bring speech and intonation to its electronic books. Designed for the embedded market, PocketBabil has been developed to minimize the time-to-market effort to develop new multi-lingual applications, accelerating its integration on target platforms. In this arrangement with Franklin, Babel will deliver its TTS engine in various languages and will customize its software to utilize Franklin's proprietary word search and spell correction algorithms. Franklin's Vice President Engineering and Chief Technology Officer, Kurt Goszyk, stated: "By combining Babel's high quality text to speech engine with Franklin's powerful search and spell correction features, our hand held reference products will benefit from a significant improvement to the user interface. In a 130,000 word dictionary, for example, even if the word is misspelled, Franklin algorithms provide instantaneous definition lookup. Once the correct definition is found, passing these phonemes to the Babel engine results in high quality synthesised speech that closely parallels that of a normal natural speech." Franklin has sold more than 29 million eBooks through 45,000 retail outlets worldwide, as well as via its web site, and through its direct marketing operation. Based in Burlington, New Jersey, Franklin Electronic Publishers Inc. was established in 1981. Since the company introduced the world's first handheld eBook in 1986, it has been exploiting the potential of eBooks to create a fundamentally new way of reading. Commenting on the announcement, Vincent Fontaine, CEO of Babel said: "Franklin's decision to use PocketBabil is an industry endorsement of the quality of our speech technology. Franklin has recognised that the clarity and pronunciation abilities of our TTS engine is vastly superior to other solutions, and therefore wholly appropriate given Franklin's leadership position in the market."
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