VoiceTrust Looks to iPhone for Revenues, Mindshare

Voice biometrics provider VoiceTrust launched its VoiceSafe application for the iPhone, available through the Apple iTunes AppStore.

The application stores sensitive information—like PIN, credit and debit numbers, passwords for logins, as well as other simple secrets like a plans for a surprise birthday—and grants access through a voice verification process, similar to VoiceTrust’s process for verification in its business-to-businesses (B2B) solutions.

The VoiceSafe iPhone application is part of a bid to build greater mindshare for voice biometric technology and build confidence in its effectiveness and security.

“We take this as an opportunity to spread the news about the possibilities of voice authentication,” says Richard Tigges, spokesman for VoiceTrust.

Acknowledging that the company has not generally played to a direct end user market, he adds, “This is definitely also a marketing tool for us to make [our products] known to our B2B clients.”

As part of the confidence building process, the company is trying to make its processes transparent, letting people know explicitly where the data is stored and how it is stored. In the case of the iPhone, the VoiceSafe is guaranteeing that all data will be stored on the iPhone and not be transferred over IP to outside servers. More than that, however, the company feels that the “greatest part in gaining trust is just trying it out.”

“If someone tries the VoiceSafe himself, he will very soon find out that even if he passes the phone to someone with a similar voice, or even a voice imitator, he won’t be able to unlock the system,” says Tigges.

The company is hoping that trust built at the individual level might help to build a stronger customer base in the far more lucrative business market, using a low-cost solution to convince those would-be customers that biometrics are strong and useful. Growing that client base in new and innovative ways may be of the utmost importance in the current economic climate.

While some analysts like Dan Miller of Opus Research predict growth of 15 percent for the voice biometrics market, even analysts like Miller acknowledge that this is a possible upward trend coming off “a few chilly quarters.” The recession has hit voice biometrics harder than other speech segments because of its high upfront capital investment in on-premise equipment and because much of its technology has been geared towards financial firms, many of which have been in unsteady to dire straits over the last year.

A free version of VoiceTrust’s VoiceSafe is available for a four-week trial period. For a charge, an unlimited version is also available.

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