Nuance Enters Voicemail Market

Nuance Communications yesterday released Voicemail to Text, its own version of a speech-to-text service that transcribes voicemail into readable messages sent either as SMS or email.

This development, announced at the CTIA Wireless Show in Las Vegas, follows Nuance’s previous releases earlier this month of an extended contract with Samsung Electronics as well as the inclusion of the company’s VSuite voice controls with AT&T’s Palm Centro smartphone. 

Voicemail to Text is a partially-automated service that revolves around a staff of more than 3,000 transcriptionists and Nuance’s Dragon NaturallySpeaking technology, a speech recognition engine for dictation and transcription. 

In a release, Nuance touted the solution’s scalability—allowing users to reduce dependency on human transcriptionists and increase automation as personal needs dictate. Doing so also reduces costs.

The release of Voicemail to Text competes with British company SpinVox, which specializes in offering a similar service to its users. A few days ago, SpinVox announced that it had received nearly $200 million in funding from a variety of investors. But despite SpinVox’s apparent stranglehold on the market, Datamonitor senior analyst Daniel Hong contends that Nuance still has the advantage, primarily because it can leverage the highly recognizable Dragon technology.

"It’s been around for quite a long time," Hong says. "So [Nuance’s] grammars and vocabulary will be larger. I think they have better technology."

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