Loquendo and H-Care Extend Avatar Presence

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Retailer TIM Brazil and Italian gambling Web site Lottomatica are now using talking Human Digital Assistants from H-Care to improve customer service and help customers navigate their sites.

Visitors to www.tim.com.br can check their account balances and pay bills online with the help of TIM Brazil's virtual guide, who can also be found in the kiosks of the country’s flagship stores. Lottomatica's online assistant, Vicky, helps visitors find their way around www.better.it, where they can see all the latest results and place bets online. Winners receive a real-time, personalized video message, or MMS.

H-Care's Human Digital Assistants are avatars that speak using text-to-speech technologies from Loquendo.

In the kiosk application, the HDA avatar is wired to a sensor and camera that identify new customers in the vicinity of the kiosk, direct audio-visual stimuli toward them, and entice them to come closer. Those who respond will discover the HDA displaying targeted information or current promotions, inviting customers to use the terminal, and guiding them through its contents.

HDAs have been developed by H-Care using animation technology that enables the avatar’s eyes and face to move in sync with the voice.

"H-Care has integrated Loquendo TTS to create customer care solutions that are informative, expressive, and fun to use," says Saverio Ricchiuto, Loquendo’s area sales manager for Italy. "Now visitors to a huge number of Web sites in all sectors are navigating their way around with ease thanks to the groundbreaking partnership between H-Care and Loquendo."

"The ability to have HDAs integrated with the relevant corporate information sources, such as CRM, billing, and CMS, allows the creation of truly personalized interactions between the avatar and the targeted customer," says Umberto Basso, H-Care’s founder and CEO. "HDAs are unique in the space of virtual assisted services being able to offer personalized and human-like experiences through every contact channel."

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