Speech Technology Gains Momentum in China

China, currently the largest mobile communications market in the world, will have a great need for value-added mobile services as the number of mobile phone users will soar from its current figure of 160 million to 280 million by 2005.

One of the value-added services that the China Mobile Internet Application Protocol Special Group (CMIS) is looking into is speech-recognition technology.

Speech-recognition or voice-activated technology is gaining popularity in Asia because it allows companies to provide, better and faster services at lower costs. It is already used by organizations such as China’s Harbin Public Information Limited, Taiwan’s Yang Ming Shang Credit Cooperative Bank (Sunny Bank), Korea National Tourism Organization and Singapore Post.

Along with other complementary technology and protocols, CMIS sees that speech technology will greatly facilitate the proliferation of mobile Internet applications in China as users mobile phones and devices can access Internet for informational access and commercial transactions with great ease.

To help accelerate the development and formulation of the protocol standard of speech technology for the China mobile Internet industry, CMIS will be working with InfoTalk Corporation, a provider of multi-lingual conversational speech understanding technology.

InfoTalk will integrate speech and mobile communications technologies with applications such as voice-activated email, messaging, Internet browsing services, financial and entertainment voice portals, customized for the needs and culture of Chinese users.

CMIS is a technology forum organization established in 2001. Led by the Department of Communication Standard Administration of the Ministry of Information Industry, CMIS was jointly initiated and organized by 14 companies including Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, China Telecom, China Mobile, China Unicom, China Netcom, Eastern Communications, ZTE Corp, Datang Telecom, Huawei Technology, Oceans Co., Ericsson China, Nokia China, Siemens Mobile Communications and Intel China, to facilitate the development of the mobile internet in China.

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