IVR systems depend heavily on speech-recognition software—the crown jewel of the IVR and mobile device market at the moment (in a way). Companies use it to set themselves apart from their competitors.
Because of that, there’s not a lot of sharing going on. This dislike for sharing is true of almost any industry, though.
When it comes to app development, however, it seems developers and companies alike are beginning to see the value in sharing software. In fact, AT&T recently released their new speech-recognition API (finally), nicknamed Watson.
The API (application programming interface) is slowly becoming the cornerstone of many large companies as they patent programs and license them out to cell phone and computer manufacturers as well as application developers.
Now, even companies like AT&T are getting into the API game.
Watson functions much like an IVR system, detecting voice and converting it into text, enabling users to interact with a whole range of devices (the video above speaks of televisions, computers and phones) through speech. Like an IVR, it simplifies our lives.
The cool thing about it is that this tech can be used by almost any app developer. Instead of each application and device requiring its own unique speech tech, all of your devices and programs can run on one tech.
That means less confusion for the user, and more free time for the developer.
Siri, Apple’s iPhone speech-recognition tech, comes close to this possibility, but unfortunately since there is no API, Siri is limited to mostly Apple apps.
That means Siri can voice-enable email, texting, calendar updates, reminders and even an internet search, but it doesn’t work with most third-party apps, like Angry Birds or Urban Spoon.
With an app market driven by third-party content, having a sense of uniformity through a program like Watson would mean everything feeling, at least on a basic level, like it’s coming from the same source.
Not only would this unify the tech experience, but it would make life a whole lot easier.