Newsletters
News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
GET RECOGNIZED.
Let an ISACA® certification
elevate your career.

Register today and save
Microsoft/Windows
DDoS Protection Powered By Verisign
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Did Amazon Buy Ivona Voice-Text Tech To Build its Own Siri?

Did Amazon Buy Ivona Voice-Text Tech To Build its Own Siri?
By Jennifer LeClaire

Share
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Share on Google Plus

Amazon has just acquired Ivona Software, a company that offers voice and language portfolios with 44 voices in 17 languages, and more in development. Of course, Amazon would have to do plenty more development on Ivona to make it a Siri competitor. That's because Siri is more than voice recognition software -- it's an intelligent assistant.
 


In a move that has some wondering if the e-tailing giant plans to challenge Apple on the Siri front, Amazon on Thursday announced the acquisition of a text-to-speech technology company. Amazon purchased Ivona Software for an undisclosed amount.

Amazon and Gdynia, Poland-based Ivona are not strangers. Ivona's technologies power several features on the Kindle Fire tablets. Beyond Amazon, Ivona also delivers text-to-speech products and services for thousands of developers, businesses and customers globally, including the Royal National Institute of Blind People.

"Ivona is already instrumental in helping us deliver excellent accessibility features on Kindle Fire, including Text-to-Speech, Voice Guide and Explore by Touch," said Dave Limp, vice president of Kindle at Amazon. Limp did not indicate what more Amazon would do with the technology, but hinted that the company looks forward to "building great products to deliver world-class voice solutions to customers around the world."

Compared to Siri

Ivona offers voice and language portfolios with 44 voices in 17 languages, and more in development. Of course, Amazon would have to do plenty more development on Ivona to make it a Siri competitor. That's because Siri is more than voice recognition software -- it's an intelligent assistant.

Siri understands context, allowing you to speak naturally when you ask it questions, for example, if you ask, "Will I need an umbrella this weekend?" it understands you are looking for a weather forecast.

Siri is also smart about using the personal information you allow it to access, for example, if you tell Siri, "Remind me to call Mom when I get home" it can find "Mom" in your iPhone's address book; or ask Siri, "What's the traffic like around here?" and it can figure out where "here" is based on your GPS location.

Room for All

But it seems Ivona could be further developed into an intelligent assistant. And Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT, told us there will be plenty of opportunity as we head into a future that promises a paradigm shift in the way people interact with technology.

"Instead of using one device to interface with another device -- like using a mouse or a keyboard to interface with the computer -- the touch-enablement we are seeing in smartphones and tablets and the increasing availability of voice recognition as a way of interfacing with a computing-style device is become increasingly common," King said.

King predicts there will not be a single type of voice recognition technology used across platforms. Instead, he expects the major players, namely Apple and Google and now Amazon, to enhance their brands with discreet types of voice recognition and voice command software.

"I find myself wondering how much difference there can be," he said. "When you talk about one vendor or another's voice recognition software it's kind of like talking about the difference between the online shopping experience you have with one site or another. But it's going to be a pretty big deal from the end-user perspective."
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



Salesforce.com is the market and technology leader in Software-as-a-Service. Its award-winning CRM solution helps 82,400 customers worldwide manage and share business information over the Internet. Experience CRM success. Click here for a FREE 30-day trial.


 Microsoft/Windows
1.   Price Wars Hitting Laptop Market?
2.   Office 365 Tailored for Attorneys
3.   Plan Your Move from Windows 7 Now
4.   Microsoft Patch Tuesday Stars IE
5.   Surface Pro Ads Aim at MacBook Pro


advertisement
China Puts Microsoft Under the Lens
Official anti-monopoly probe launched.
Average Rating:
Plan Your Move from Windows 7 Now
But don't rush to deploy Windows 8.
Average Rating:
Dynamics CRM Online Extends Reach
Now available in 17 more countries.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Chinese Hackers Nab Info on Millions of U.S. Patients
A group of Chinese hackers has stolen the personal information, including names and Social Security numbers, of about 4.5 million patients at hospitals operated by Community Health Systems.
 
Premier FBI Cybersquad in U.S. To Add Agents
After helping prosecutors charge Chinese army officials with stealing trade secrets from major companies and by snaring a Russian-led hacking ring, the premier FBI cyber-squad is getting a boost.
 
Apple Opens iCloud Data Center in China
Treading lightly, Apple acknowledged it has started to store encrypted iCloud personal data of some Chinese users on servers in mainland China, operated by the state-owned China Telecom.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Compression, Deduplication Come to Violin Concerto 2200
Violin Memory has announced that data deduplication and compression capabilities are now available on its Concerto 2200 solution. Typically, users will experience deduplication rates between 6:1 and 10:1.
 
Cisco Axes 6,000 Employees in Restructuring Plan
Faced with declining profits, Cisco is laying off up to 6,000 employees in the months ahead -- a whopping 8 percent of its global workforce. That's in addition to the 4,000 jobs Cisco cut last year.
 
Web Slows, Have Internet Routers Reached The Limit?
If you encountered problems connecting to the Internet on August 12, you weren't alone. Networking experts blame the wide-scale slowdown on outdated routing systems that are reaching their limits.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
HTC Debuts Windows Phone Version of One M8 Smartphone
HTC is bringing the Windows Phone mobile OS to its flagship One M8 device -- the first time any mainstream flagship smartphone has been offered with a choice of operating systems.
 
Verizon Earns Top Rating in Mobile Network Comparison
A new report says Verizon Wireless was the top-performing U.S. cellphone service provider in the first half of 2014, on a nationwide and state-by-state basis, as well as in metro areas.
 
Sprint Comes Out with Data Guns Blazing
As its new CEO promised, Sprint has rolled out a new aggressively competitive price plan. The shared data plans promise twice the high-speed data and at lower prices than AT&T and Verizon Wireless.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | CRM Systems | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.