Interactions Launches Curo Speech

Interactions today introduced Curo Speech, an automatic speech recognition and text-to-speech application designed to modernize customer care interactions.

Curo Speech enables enterprises to incorporate U.S. English and North American Spanish speech technology into their voice-based customer service channels, providing a direct path to multichannel and enhanced care offerings to support customer interactions.

"Interactions is focused on providing practical and extensible conversational solutions that address the demands of businesses today and in the future," says Mike Iacobucci, Interactions' CEO. "In a market that has been largely without choice, Curo Speech delivers a customer interaction option that meets the needs of the growing enterprise."

Curo Speech supports SRGS, SSML and voice XML and integrates with monitoring technology from Genesys and Avaya. It leverages the technology of Interactions' recently acquired AT&T Watson platform (now Curo Speech and Language Platform).

According to Interactions, the technology is built on decades of applied research and incorporates the latest advances in machine learning and deep neural networks.

The difference between this and competitors' offerings, according to Mary McKenna, Interactions' director of project management, is that Curo Speech provides both the automatic speech recognition and the text-to-speech on a single platform rather than as a la carte offerings.

McKenna says that Curo Speech is being offered at a lower price than competitors' products. The application is available for purchase both directly from Interactions and through its partner network, which includes value-added solutions providers, resellers, and alliance partners.

"The market hasn't had a lot of choice when it comes to customer care solutions," says Jane Price, Interactions' vice president of marketing. "We're offering businesses opportunity for the right speech engine and the right speech technology for customer care solutions."

"We're also offering subscription and perpetual models," McKenna adds. That enables the buyer the option of accounting for the purchase as an operating (subscription) or capital (perpetual) expense.

"Our licenses are also flexible, so you can easily migrate to new models," McKenna says.

"Interactions believes it's something that grows with the customer and with other ways of communicating in the future" Price adds.

Interactions expects to add chat and text-based communications to the Curo Speech application in the future.

Iacobucci adds: "Speech recognition and artificial intelligence are the future of enterprise customer care, and we're enabling a path forward."

Though he wouldn't provide a specific forecast for Curo Speech sales, Iacobucci says he has "great expectations" for the product. "There is an appetite for change, for something new," he says. "A lot of what we hear is that there is an appetite for alternatives. Customers are looking for companies that are more nimble."

Interactions itself doubled its business between 2014 and 2015, Iacobucci says. "We're growing very well. Competitively against other major players, we're doing exceptionally well. We have a unique offering that is very competitive. We are approaching the market in a way that hasn't been done before. We have a disruptive price model that will do very well for us in the market."

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