Speak Up: Voice Activated Browsing Debuts

Trying to make keyboards a thing of the past,
Internet software companySpyglass
Inc.
teamed up with Lucent Technologies
Inc.
to introduce voice-activated Web browsing.


A concept prototype service being shown at this year’s Wireless IT
Conference. It is designed to enable users to dial a single
number and through simple voice commands, to navigate through
standard Web pages obtaining voice-synthesized information.


The phone browser couples telephony, speech recognition and text-to-speech
technology, developed by Lucent’s Bell Laboratories, with Spyglass Prism, a
server-based content delivery application platform that visits Web sites
and selectively extracts and packages content into a format best suited for
telephones.


“We had been experimenting with a voice-based user interface for
Spyglass Prism for some time,” said Randy Littleson, Spyglass general
manager. “But it was only after
joining Lucent’s Cooperative Innovations program that we had access to
the cutting edge telephony, voice recognition and text-to-speech
technology that had been developed by the Bell Labs group.”


The companies said the technology will be targeted at online service
providers looking to provide telephone-only access to the Internet.


A schematic of the Lucent/Spyglass phone browser
is available at the Spyglass Web site.


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