RealTime IT News

Lycos Gives Users a Mouthpiece

Lycos Inc. Wednesday unleashed its long-ago-announced voice portal in five major locations.

Featuring the security of voice recognition from Mobilee, Lycos is bringing its "anywhere" access pledge to Boston, New York, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles in the form of a voice portal that provides telephone users with free access to the Lycos Network in streaming audio by dialing an access number and speaking into the phone.

Users will be able to access news categories to suit many tastes and interests, including business, technology, entertainment and sports news and scores. People also have the option to develop a customized Web profile using the My Lycos personalization platform.

What makes the move more interesting, is that it comes a day after Yahoo! Inc. launched Yahoo! Phone, which provides telephone and voice access to content at the push of a dial button. Though Lycos was beaten to the punch by a day, it had actually hinted at its voice portal in August.

Ron Sege, executive vice president of Lycos, said the portal is an easy way for listeners to ask for what they want.

"Regardless of what type of access device our users prefer, we want to provide them with a consistent interface and our My Lycos platform allows us to extend that interface through voice," said Jason Pavona, director of wireless strategies and personalization of Lycos. "Personalization will continue to be one of the cornerstones of our wireless delivery strategy because of its positive impact on user experience and acceptance."

Launched in July, Lycos Anywhere, like its rival Yahoo! Everywhere, is geared to give its millions of users access to its content on the go.