Speech Technology eWeekly - May 01, 2005


Opinions Fly with the Merger Between ScanSoft and Nuance

Opinions vary among industry analysts and speech providers surrounding the ScanSoft's acquisition of Nuance.

Nip/tuck in the IVR Industry: The Changing Face of Platforms

In a new report, "The Definitive Guide to the IVR Marketplace: North America and EMEA," independent market analyst Datamonitor expects revenues from proprietary touchtone IVR in North America, Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) to decrease by more than 35 percent through 2009 as a growing number of businesses are opting to invest in emerging open-standard IVR platforms.

Research: Independent Software Vendors Partnering with Microsoft More Optimistic About Their Future

New research by independent market analyst Datamonitor reveals that software firms working with Microsoft are more optimistic about the outlook for their firm than those partnering with other major platform/database providers and integrators.

Talking Tech

Regaining Consumer IVR Confidence: Companies Draw on Different Tools to Save IVR/Speech Interaction

Michael Chavez, vice president of client services at ClickFox, explains that "by leveraging a strategic combination of customer behavior intelligence, customer service interviews and surveys, organizations can reduce customer frustration with IVR systems, which will result in drastic savings, while also improving customer satisfaction."

The Impact of the ScanSoft-Nuance Merger

Bill Meisel, president of TMA Associates (www.tmaa.com), explains why "The ScanSoft-Nuance merger, with ScanSoft agreeing to purchase the outstanding shares of Nuance and use the name Nuance for the merged company, will send shock waves through the companies' partner networks and end-user customers."

Speech Technology for Persons With Disabilities: Are We Breaking Down Barriers or Creating New Ones?

Terry Thompson, senior computer specialist at the University of Washington, explains, "If industry players embrace universal design, all users - with and without disabilities - will finally be able to participate in our technology-enhanced world."

Speech Technology News

S1 and Edify Release Voice Banking Solution

ATLANTA - S1 Corporation and its subsidiary Edify Corporation introduced the next generation of its speech application for the financial services industry.

CosmoCall Universe Version 4.5 Adds New Customer Interaction Tools

MELVILLE, N.Y. - CosmoCom released CosmoCall Universe Version 4.5.

Barclays International Realty Selects iVoice

Barclays International Realty has installed an iVoice Speech-Enabled Auto Attendant.

Cepstral Announces Swift MRCP Text-To-Speech

PITTSBURGH - Cepstral LLC released a Media Resource Control Protocol (MRCP) support for the Cepstral Swift Text-to-Speech System.

Angel.com Releases Check-In/Check-Out Application

Angel.com's phone-based Check-In/Check-Out application is designed for companies who require employees to record work hours on a daily basis.

Royal Philips Electronics Integrates SpeechMagic into "docma"

VIENNA, Austria and BARCELONA, Spain - Royal Philips Electronics integrated SpeechMagic into "docma," resulting in a speech recognition solution for the Spanish healthcare market.

National 511 Alliance Adds LogicTree as Member

PHOENIX - PBS&J, SmartRoute Systems/Westwood One (SRS), Tele Atlas, and Meteorlogix added LogicTree as a full member of the national 511 Alliance.

Allsec Selected NICE and Avaya

RA'ANANA, Israel - Allsec has placed an order with NICE Systems to implement its solution for contact centers. The project will be implemented in partnership with NICE partner Avaya GlobalConnect.

Premier Travel Inn UK Deploys ScanSoft's Speech-Based Booking System

PEABODY, Mass. and GHENT, Belgium - Premier Travel Inn has deployed a ScanSoft® speech-based reservations system, called TINA (Travel Inn Now Automated).

Vocalocity Appoints Carter and Burnett to New Positions

ATLANTA, Ga. - Vocalocity hired Jerry Carter as senior technical consultant and Dan Burnett as lead product manager.

Multimodal Interaction Working Group Releases Working Draft of Multimodal Architecture and Interfaces

The Multimodal Interaction Working Group released the First Public Working Draft of the Multimodal Architecture and Interfaces.

IT Analyst Firm Says VoIP Strategy Positions Microsoft to Compete in Telecom Market

LONDON, ON - IT analyst firm Info-Tech Research Group says that Microsoft's release of Microsoft Speech Server (MSS) 2004 R2 represents the latest step in an ongoing campaign to evolve the company beyond its position as the dominant IT software vendor into the realm traditionally reserved for telecommunications vendors.

MERA Releases New Version of Softswitch

MERA Systems released MERA VoIP Transit Softswitch (MVTS).

NewVoiceMedia Names telisma as Strategic Partner and Adds New Member to Management Team

LAVERSTOKE, UK - NewVoiceMedia has selected telisma as its strategic partner for voice recognition and names Anthony Buxton to management team to lead the company's business development of its intelligent network services.

The American Printing House for the Blind Has Chosen AT&T Natural Voices for Assistive Products

PITTSBURGH - The American Printing House for the Blind (APH) has chosen Wizzard's speech technology solution of AT&T's Natural Voices Software Development Kit for use in several of their assistive products.

Telephone Learning Software Uses a Phone and the Web to Assist with Essay Portion of the SAT

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. - Steven Donahue released the Telephone Learning Software capable of processing student essays by telephone and returning instant holistic scores.

Pronexus VBSALT 1.2 Supports Telephony Interface Managers from Brooktrout and Intel and Expands Language Support on Microsoft Speech Server R2

Pronexus introduced VBSALT 1.2, the latest generation of its application development tool, which supports the recently announced Microsoft Speech Server (MSS) 2004 R2.

Voice Web Solutions Releases Voice Web Studio 2.0 for Macromedia Dreamweaver MX

SEATTLE, Washington - Voice Web Solutions released Voice Web Studio 2.0, an upgrade to Voice Web Studio 1.5, a SALT developer tool integrated with Macromedia Dreamweaver MX 2004.

Globitel Signs a Partnership Agreement with Nuance

From AME Info - Globitel has joined the Nuance OEM partnership program.

Genesys Names Thomson Prometric Exclusive Provider of Genesys Certification Exams

BALTIMORE and SAN FRANCISCO - Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, Inc. has enlisted Thomson Prometric and part of The Thomson Corporation as its exclusive provider of certification exams for the Genesys Certified Professional (GCP) program.

Vail Systems, Paraxip Technologies and CYGCOM Partner to Enable Converged Communication for Microsoft Speech Server

DEERFIELD, Ill., MONTREAL, Canada, and TORONTO, Canada - Vail Systems together with Paraxip Technologies and CYGCOM Integrated Technologies released a suite of telephony connectivity bundles, based on Intel® NetStructure™ communications building blocks, for Microsoft Speech Server 2004.

Lavastorm Technologies Forms a Global Alliance with Convergys

Lavastorm Technologies has signed a non-exclusive Global Alliance with Convergys .

NextiraOne Enhances Professional and Managed Services Offering

HOUSTON - NextiraOne enhanced and expanded its services offerings for enterprise clients into three categories - professional, managed and maintenance services.

Microsoft Announces Peak Performance Initiative for the Automotive Community

DEARBORN, Mich. - Microsoft chairman and chief software architect Bill Gates teamed with Microsoft Corp.'s automotive team in announcing the Peak Performance Initiative, designed to help the automotive community accelerate insight through advanced analysis services, drive innovation through collaboration, and improve performance via increased visibility into operations across the automotive supply chain.

Amcat Signs OEM Agreement with ScanSoft

EDMOND, Okla. - Amcat has integrated ScanSoft, Inc.'s RealSpeak® text-to-speech technology into Amcat's Contact Center Suite™, an inbound, outbound & blended contact center software solution.

TuVox Releases Speech Technology Protection Plan

Under the terms of this plan, TuVox will provide guaranteed investment protection for any company that has selected or will select ScanSoft, Nuance or any other platform technologies, for as long as they are available in the market.

Wizzard Software and MedivoxRx Technologies the Successful Bidder in EBay Auction for Olympian Sponsorship

PITTSBURGH - MedivoxRx Technologies, Inc. emerged the winner of a month-long advertising/sponsorship package offered by Olympic Silver Medalist Adam Nelson.

LumenVox's Speech Tuner Supports Nuance 8.5

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - LumenVox announced the availability of Nuance 8.5 support with their Speech Tuner.

Loquendo Develops Voice Biometrics Security Solutions Based on Speaker Verification and Identification

TURIN, Italy - Loquendo released its Speaker Verification and Identification technology.

Visage Mobile Selects TuVox to Deliver Voice Self-service

LOS ALTOS, Calif. - Visage Mobile has selected TuVox to provide voice self-service to its customers.

Mid-Atlantic Financial Services to Use Speech Recognition Application from Voice2Form

Mid-Atlantic Financial Services, a financial services firm in Atlanta, has signed a license agreement with Voice2Form

VOCAL Announces Single-Processor VoIP-Analog Telephone Adapter Based on TMS320C55x DSP Generation from Texas Instruments

VOCAL Technologies released a single-processor design that will enable the development of equipment that allows homes and small businesses to add telephone lines to their broadband services. VOCAL's reference design for a Voice over IP (VoIP) analog telephone adapter (ATA) is based on the TMS320C55x digital signal processor (DSP) generation and analog technology from Texas Instruments.

Voxeo Achieves VoiceXML 2.0 Platform Certification

ORLANDO, Fla. - Voxeo Corporation's VoiceCenter v6.0 IVR platform has been awarded VoiceXML Forum Platform Certification.

Genesys and Verizon Collaborate on Hosted IP Call Center Services Solution

MIAMI - Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, Inc. partners with Verizon to deliver a hosted voice-ready Internet Protocol (IP) services call center solution.

Brooktrout Technology Delivers All-in-One Telephony Platform for Microsoft Speech Server 2004 R2

NEEDHAM, Mass. - Brooktrout Technology, Inc. released its TR1000™ for Microsoft Speech Server (MSS) 2004 R2.

Witness Systems Releases Enhanced Workforce Management Solution

ORLANDO and ATLANTA - Witness Systems released enhanced capabilities to its workforce management software.

ClinPro Selected Envox 6 to Power IVR Solutions for Medical Research and Clinical Trial Services

ClinPro has selected Envox Worldwide's Envox 6 to power interactive voice response (IVR) solutions for a growing clinical research organization.

MacSpeech Releases Australian/NZ iListen 1.6.8 Updaters

Macspeech released updaters for the Australian/New Zealand version of iListen 1.6.8.

Buongiorno MyAlert Selects Vida Software

BARCELONA - Buongiorno MyAlert has selected Vida Software's Natural Interaction infrastructure software to be incorporated into Buongiorno's mobile multimedia services.

Pronexus Announces Interoperability Study Between VBVoice and Asterisk PBX

Pronexus has completed an interoperability study between its development environment, VBVoice, and Asterisk, the open source Private Branch Exchange (PBX).

Allconnect Selects Gold Systems to Develop Voice-Recognition Application

BOULDER, Colo. - Allconnect Inc. launched Voice-XML self-service speech recognition applications by Gold Systems.

Microsoft Launches Microsoft Speech Server 2004 R2 with Expanded Language Support and New Deployment Options

REDMOND, Wash. - Microsoft Corp. released Microsoft® Speech Server (MSS) 2004 R2. With MSS 2004 R2, enterprise customers can offer language support for U.S. Spanish and Canadian French.

Wizzard Software Moves Forward With Acquisition of Interim Health Care of Wyoming

PITTSBURGH - Wizzard Software is in the final stages of its document preparation and due diligence review to acquire the assets of Interim Health Care of Wyoming for its MedivoxRx Technologies subsidiary.

Loquendo Brings Embedded TTS to the Symbian Market

Loquendo integrated Loquendo TTS with the Symbian Operating System.

Ai Squared Selects Wizzard Software for ZoomText Software

PITTSBURGH - Ai Squared has again chosen Wizzard's offering of IBM's ViaVoice for their ZoomText Magnifier/ScreenReader software, a screen access product for the visually-impaired.

Apptera Unveils Voice-Automated Campaign Management Solution for Retail Industry

CHICAGO - Apptera™ released a voice-enabled campaign management solution for the retail market that allows businesses to create marketing promotions to educate, inform, and sell to customers via their inbound phone channel.

Witness Systems Completes Acquisition of Optimis Group

Witness Systems acquired Optimis Group Limited, a reseller of Blue Pumpkin's enterprise workforce management solutions in the U.K.

MacSpeech Supports Mac OS X v10.4 "Tiger" with iListen Version 1.6.8

MacSpeech released version 1.6.8 of iListen with many enhancements including new features to support Mac OS X v10.4 "Tiger."

Avaya Makes New Announcements Concerning Solutions, Partnerships and Research

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. - Avaya Inc. released new solutions that deliver communications capabilities to the smallest of branch office locations, expanded its membership in the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS) Consortium, committed 90 percent of its research and development investments to ongoing software development, and intends to enter a strategic relationship with Juniper Networks to deliver converged communication solutions to enterprise customers worldwide.

Pronexus Signs Agreement with CTI-PRO

OTTAWA, Canada - Pronexus Inc. has signed a distribution agreement with CTI-PRO, a distributor of hardware and software resources for IVR and telephony in Eastern Europe.

ScanSoft Buys MedRemote for $6.2 Million

From Computer Business Review Online - ScanSoft has acquired MedRemote, a developer of medical informatics and transcription workflow services, for $6.2 million.

ScanSoft Bolsters Search Throughout E-Commerce Chain

From DM News - The Peabody, Mass. software provider worked with Minneapolis-based Digital River, an e-commerce technology provider, on an overall search strategy that included sending prospective customers from Google to the correct landing pages on ScanSoft's site and using the most effective ad creatives to get search customers to the site.

AVST Launches CallXpress 7.7

FOOTHILL RANCH, Calif. - Applied Voice & Speech Technologies, Inc. (AVST), released a new version of its unified communications (UC) solution, CallXpress®.

Larry Underwood to Lead NextiraOne Professional and Managed Services Practice

HOUSTON - NextiraOne has appointed Larry Underwood to lead the professional services practice.

Superior Court Adopts Speech Technology to Serve Citizens via the Telephone

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Napa Superior Court chooses Edify and ATI to give residents 24/7 access to jury, criminal and traffic information.

Traditional Telephony Dying at Hands of VoIP, According to Research Group

LONDON, ON - The adoption of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology is the death knell for traditional telephony, says a study from information technology research firm Info-Tech Research Group.

Premiere Global Services Launches Two Speech-Enabled Solutions

ATLANTA - Premiere Global Services Inc. added two new speech-enabled solutions to its suite of voice services: an Automated Payment feature that enables businesses to accept credit card payments over the telephone, and an Interactive Survey feature that speeds up the survey and data collection process - all without live agent intervention.

Aculab Supports Microsoft Speech Server 2004 R2

MILTON KEYNES, U.K. - Aculab now supports Microsoft Speech Server (MSS) 2004 R2, which is being launched on June 1 at Microsoft's Tech Ed 2005 event.

Frost & Sullivan Recognizes Convergys

PALO ALTO, Calif. & CINCINNATI - Frost & Sullivan has recognized Convergys Corporation with its 2004 Market Leadership Award. Frost & Sullivan also named Convergys as the market share leader in the North American contact center outsourcing industry for the second consecutive year.

Envox Worldwide Launches Envox 6.1 VoiceXML Studio

WESTBOROUGH, Mass. - Envox Worldwide released the Envox 6.1 VoiceXML Studio, which enables developers to create DTMF-based or speech-enabled applications that run on any VoiceXML 2.0-compliant gateway.

Metaphor Launches International Distribution of Its Packaged Speech Applications

WELLESLEY, Mass. - Metaphor Solutions develops new partnerships to expand its distribution to international markets.

Speakwire Makes Headlines Talk

CEC Systems launched Speakwire in May 2005.

Philips SpeechMagic Wins UK E-Health Innovation Award

Royal Philips Electronics' speech recognition technology SpeechMagic has won the E-Health Innovation Awards in the United Kingdom in the category "Best Use of E-Health to Improve Efficiency."

Atos Origin Partners with Loquendo on New Interactive Virtual Assistant Solution

Atos Origin, jointly with Loquendo, released its new Web-based self-service and multi-channel applications in new conversational interfaces and interactive virtual assistants at the Loquendo stand at Voice World Europe 2005.

New Enterprise Customers Choose Angel.com for IVR Solutions in 2005

Angel.com has attracted 35 new enterprise-class customers in the first four months of 2005.

Loquendo Releases Loquendo ASR 6.6

TURIN, Italy - Loquendo released Loquendo ASR 6.6.

Cisco and IBM to Deliver New Speech-Enabled Self-Service Solutions

SOMERS, N.Y. - IBM and Cisco jointly plan to deliver speech-enabled self-service solutions that combine IBM's WebSphere Voice Server product and Cisco's Customer Voice Portal to contact centers.

Envox Worldwide Expands Professional Services Initiative

WESTBOROUGH, Mass. - Envox Worldwide has expanded its Professional Services initiative to better assist companies in their move to open, standards-based voice solutions.

Ultradata Selects Sensory Speech Recognition for Road Genie Hand-held Navigator

Ultradata Road Genie Audio Navigation System selected Sensory's RSC-4128 speech recognition IC.

Genesys Announces SIP Contact Center Solution

MIAMI - Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, Inc. released a new Genesys Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) contact center solution that provides customer interaction control for any SIP-enabled infrastructure, regardless of vendor.

Voxpilot and Anco Partner; Voxpilot Open Media Platform Supports Multimedia Services

Voxpilot and Anco partnered to bring VoiceXML-based interactive voice response (IVR) solutions to Greece and Voxpilot has designed the Voxpilot Open Media Platform to support video applications and multimedia services.