IBM and Nuance team up on speech technology

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IBM and Nuance team up on speech technology

IBM and Nuance have signed a join licensing and technical services agreement to help enhance and expand speech technology.

As part of the partnership, specialists from both companies will work together to incorporate IBM technology into Nuance's speech software, with the first products expected to be available within two years.

Under the terms of the agreement, Nuance will buy speech-related patents from IBM, but the latter will continue to serve its own customers in this regard.

"IBM and Nuance share a vision to proliferate advanced speech capabilities across a broad range of devices and environments," said Dr John Kelly, senior vice president and director of IBM Research.

"We recognise that Nuance is a leader in the speech marketplace, and we believe this technology agreement will accelerate the delivery of speech innovations to the world's consumers."

Although speech recognition software has been around for many years, it has often been marginalised as inefficient, inaccurate and resource heavy.

However, in recent times the technology has improved to the point where it is increasingly accurate at recognising natural speech, making it a viable option for voice controlled devices, speech-to-text systems and biometric security.

"We are enthusiastic about this strategic relationship with IBM, building on its rich history of speech research to accelerate the creation and adoption of next-generation speech solutions," said Paul Ricci, chairman and chief technology officer at Nuance.

"Through this relationship, we expect to inspire a new level of technical advancement unprecedented in the speech industry, from which the customers and partners of both companies will benefit."

Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.
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