Lucent offers speech software package to developers

Lucent offers speech software package to developers

Lucent Technologies is offering developers a kit to build speech-enabled Windows software applications, the company announced this week.

The new developers kit, called the Speech Application Platform, is the first software product launched by Lucent as part of its ongoing speech research at Bell Labs, the company's research and development branch.

The kit is aimed at independent software vendors and value-added resellers who want to build Windows-based applications to incorporate Lucent's speech recognition technologies for the desktop, said John Holmgren, business development manager for Lucent Speech Solutions. The kit also integrates Lucent's text-to-speech technology.

The Lucent speech platform might be used in shrink-wrapped applications designed for the small office/home office market and possibly also for consumer use, he said. The platform also could find use on Windows NT servers for Internet telephony applications that are not large enough to require a hardware-based product.

Lucent has previously launched speech recognition hardware and has been demonstrating that and related technologies for several months.

"But this developer's kit is designed for those who are looking for a software-only solution," Holmgren said.

Lucent also believes there is a market for applications for handheld devices, enabling remote users to access PCs via modem using voice commands to retrieve e-mail, for instance.

"We're looking seriously at Windows CE," Holmgren said. Lucent views Windows as its target market because of that operating system's widespread use in PCs, he said.

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