Nuance Communications is a company that develops speech recognition technology that powers IVR systems worldwide. Companies looking to offer their clients the most natural telephonic interactions possible utilize text-to-speech (TTS) and automatic speech recognition (ASR) technology to allow callers to freely speak with automated systems.
When compared with DTMF entry (which involves submitting input via a touch-tone keypad), customers typically report that they prefer IVR systems that can process data and offer responses in their native language. IVR systems that operate utilizing this type of technology are viewed as an extension of a company, and if implemented effectively, are a component of the company’s overall image and branding.
The sound and feel of an IVR system is as important to a company as their logo or their website, since it is a sensory extension of the company’s overall image. Having highly functional, easy-to-work-with systems in place is a vital part of deploying and maintaining user-friendly IVR applications.
Nuance Communications has played a huge role in effectively powering speech technology applications over the last 15 years. Their most famous application to date is Siri, the speech recognition technology that powers Apple’s iPhone and iPad.
Siri is both a personal assistant and knowledge navigator. The system allows users to communicate with their mobile telephone via a natural language interface. Siri is state of the art in part because the technology is able to detect speaking queues from a person’s voice, dialect, language and accent in order to improve its operational functionality over time.
It is worth noting that initially, it was not highly publicized that Siri was powered in part by Nuance technology. Apple announced the release of the iPhone 4S at the beginning of October 2011. Per TechCrunch writer MG Siegler “Nuance seemed to be going out of their way not to say they were powering the awesome new Siri feature of the iPhone 4S.”
As it turned out, Nuance was powering Siri but they were not allowed to publicize this fact or comment on it. Siegler pointed to the fact that Siri was marketed as Apple technology, and it wasn’t about Nuance.
This has all changed in recent weeks, with Nuance releasing their own Siri-like engine that can power a variety of mobile devices (not just iOS).
Stay tuned for Siri Meet Nina…