Posts Tagged ‘Truly Handsfree’
August 22, 2016
Sensory is proud to announce that it has been awarded with two 2016 Speech Tech Magazine Awards. With some stiff competition in the speech industry, Sensory continues to excel in offering the industry’s most advanced embedded speech recognition and speech-based security solutions for today’s voice-enabled consumer electronics movement.
The 2016 Speech Technology Awards include:
Speech Luminary Award – Awarded to Sensory’s CEO, Todd Mozer
“What really impresses me about Todd is his long commitment to speech technology, and specifically, his focus on embedded and small-footprint speech recognition,” says Deborah Dahl, principal at Conversational Technologies and chair of the World Wide Web Consortium’s Multimodal Interactions Working Group. “He focuses on what he does best and excels at that.”
Star Performers Award – Awarded to Sensory for its contributions in enabling voice-enabled IoT products via embedded technologies
“Sensory has always been in the forefront of embedded speech recognition, with its TrulyHandsfree product, a fast, accurate, and small-footprint speech recognition system. Its newer product, TrulyNatural, is ground- breaking because it supports large vocabulary speech recognition and natural language understanding on embedded devices, removing the dependence on the cloud,” said Deborah Dahl, principal at Conversational Technologies and chair of the World Wide Web Consortium’s Multimodal Interactions Working Group. “While cloud-based recognition is the right solution for many applications, if the application must work regardless of connectivity, embedded technology is required. The availability of TrulyNatural embedded natural language understanding should make many new types of applications possible.”
– Guest Blog by Michael Farino
October 1, 2015
Todd Mozer’s interview with Martin Wasserman on FutureTalk
October 15, 2014
A couple of news headlines have appeared recently asserting that voice activation is unsafe. I thought it was time for Sensory to weigh in on a few aspects of this since we are the pioneers in voice activation:
August 7, 2013
Running on the OS level does drain power. Even using the baseband or apps processors can be inefficient. This is why Sensory has ported to processors such as Cirrus Logic, Conexant, DSPG, Realtek, Texas Instruments, Wolfson, and all of the leading IP platforms (ARM, CEVA, Tensilica, Verisilicon, etc.), and many more. Our chip and IP partners are reporting power consumption as low as 1.7mA. That includes the microphone and preamp circuit, and it can go even lower by using a sound detection front end to turn off processing in quiet conditions. Tensilica has even introduced the HiFi Mini IP core targeting Sensory’s TrulyHandsfree approach for companies that want to use always on technology without extra bells and whistles.
May 1, 2013
February 18, 2013
(…and something new from Sensory just around the corner!)
I remember watching the Superbowl last year and seeing a BMW Series 3 commercial that I thought was interesting.
It was interesting to me because they put a motion/proximity sensor under the trunk so the user could open the trunk in a hands-free manner. The commercial highlights the benefit of hands-free access when a woman walks up with her hands full of luggage and she just wiggles her foot around and the trunk pops open! Cool…except the user has to do a little one legged dance with their hands full, and as the commercial highlights (which is another reason why I found it interesting), other things can accidentally open the trunk, like a dog wagging its tail. Wouldn’t a hands-free voice trigger do a much better job? Especially an ultra-low-power implementation on a standalone processor with built in speaker verification for security…sounds like a challenge for Sensory’s TrulyHandsfree approach.
Fast forward to this year’s Superbowl, and Kia comes out with the “space babies” ad for its Sorento, and the Uvo entertainment system. Kid asks dad “where do babies come from” and dad concocts an elaborate and humorous lie.
Then after dad’s tall tale the kid says “But Jake said that babies are made when mommies and daddies…” and dad quickly interrupts the kid by saying “Uvo, play Wheels on the Bus”. The Uvo system hears dad and immediately plays the music drowning out the kid’s question. Cool commercial and nice use of voice activation to control music while driving!
Many of Sensory’s customers have told us that they don’t want to have to say the brand name as a command word, and they would really like to name their products themselves, and even better, have the products know who they are when they talk so that settings and controls can be customized to their use…Another job for Sensory’s TrulyHandsfree!
On February 19th we will announce our TrulyHandsfree 3.0 which will enable all of the voice control scenarios I have described, enabling better user experiences that are more customized and more secure!
May 30, 2012
Sensory’s had a lot of press lately. We made 3 big announcements all pretty much together:
1) Announcing speaker verification
2) Announcing speaker identification
3) Saying Sensory is in the Samsung Galaxy S3
Sensory announced these just before CTIA in New Orleans. We had a small booth at the show, and gave demos at several events (on the CTIA stage and floor, at the Mobility Awards dinner, and at the excellent Pepcom Mobile Focus event).
We got a lot of nice press from this. I was thrilled that the Speech Technology email newsletter put our verification release as the featured and lead story. One of the articles I like best, though, just came out last week by Pete Pachal at Mashable http://mashable.com/2012/05/29/sensory-galaxy-s-iii/
This article is great for several key reasons. One is that Pete gets it. He didn’t just reprint our press release, but he added his commentary and wrapped it up in a nice story that hits some of the key issues.
However, what’s best is what the readers wrote in. I LOVE their insights and comments. Here’s a few of the dialogs with my commentary attached:
Seriously??? You still need to push a button to use Siri? I’ve had the “wake with voice” option on my crusty old HTC Incredible, via VLingo inCar, for about 2 years now. Hard to believe Apple is that far behind.
My response: EXACTLY JB! In fact that crusty old HTC using Vlingo, also uses Sensory’s TrulyHandsfree approach! Vlingo was our first licensee in the mobile space.
Scott: But this is talking about OS integration instead of app integration. And as I’m sure you’ve seen on your phone, and as the article noted, wake with voice options currently use a lot of power, which means I can’t see a lot of people willing to use it.
My response: Precisely, Scott! This is why we are implementing the “deeply embedded” approach that will take power consumption down by a factor of 10! Nevertheless, users LOVE it even if it consumes power:
JB – I use it all the time and since my phone plugs into the car’s adapter, I don’t really worry at all about power usage. It’s never been a problem.
My response – Yes, Vlingo and Samsung did a very nice implementation by having an “always listening” mode, particularly useful while driving. Other approaches we expect to see in the future are intelligent sensor based approaches so the phone knows when to listen and when not to (e.g. why not have it turn on and listen whenever you start traveling past 20 MPH, etc.)
Is there anything to prevent me from messing with another person’s phone?
Fillfill Ha ha, imagine being in an auditorium and yelling “Hi Galaxy! … Erase Address Book! … Confirm!”
My comment – Funny! This is one of the reasons we have added speaker verification and identification features to the trigger function
DhanB – Siri doesn’t require a button. It can be activated by lifting the phone up to your face.
Great reader responses:
Darkreaper – …..while driving? (Right! That’s illegal in California and other states!)
Tone – Yes, but with the Samsung Galaxy II, I don’t have to touch it at all. As the article states, this is crucial when you’re in a situation, such as driving. I’ve dropped the phone on the floor while driving and I was still able to send a text message, an email and place a call with it sliding around the back seat. (Bluetooth) iPhone can’t compete, sorry. :-/
…and of course the old “butt dialing” problem:
Jason – This makes me think of the old “butt dialing” problem when you sat down on your phone cause I’d much prefer a manual trigger to prevent accidental usage.
My comment: Once again, I agree with the readers. Sensory isn’t pushing to force “always listening” modes on users, we just want to allow them the choice. We strongly recommend that products have multiple options for anything that can be done by voice or touch. We believe the users should have the right and the ability to access the power of mobile devices without being forced to touch them. And if they want to turn off this ability, that is certainly their choice! We turn off our ringers (at least we should) when we enter a meeting or go to the movies. Likewise, we can turn off hands free voice control when it’s not appropriate…and with the growing presence and power of intelligent sensors, it will get easier and easier (albeit with some mishaps along the way!) for the phones to know when they should listen!
A lot of people commented about Siri. Apple isn’t stupid. They get it that hitting buttons isn’t the most convenient way to always access voice control. That’s why there’s a sensor in place when you lift the phone to your face (of course still requiring touch), it’s also why Siri can speak back. Apple pushed the Voice User Interface forward with Siri…Samsung pushed it further with TrulyHandsfree wake up. There will be a lot of back and forth over the coming years and voice features will continue as a major battleground.
As devices get increasing utility WITHOUT touching the phones (e.g. remote control functions, accessing and receiving data by voice, etc.), the need for a TrulyHandsfree approach will grow stronger and stronger, and Sensory will continue to have the BEST solution – More Accurate, Lower Power, Faster Response Times, and NOW with built in speaker verification or speaker ID!
July 12, 2011
I have a new favorite toy. It’s Watson the Raccoon, one of Hallmark’s new Interactive Storybook and Story Buddy™ characters.
I used to have the time to buy every product that featured one of Sensory’s technologies. I have to admit I don’t do that much anymore, and as my kids have gotten older, I buy fewer and fewer toys in general, much less ones with speech recognition. Luckily I was visiting my dad, and he had purchased one out of curiosity.
For many years, my favorite Sensory-based toy was from the very early days of Sensory called Radar the Robot, from Fisher Price. I have fond memories of my kids imitating Radar, and also remember biking around Bali on my honeymoon, going for a night ride through the jungle by myself just to find a fax machine so I could send an agreement draft back to Fisher Price (Design Win for Radar!)
Sorry Radar…Watson has removed you from your pedestal. Watson now reigns supreme!
Hallmark’s Interactive Storybooks use Sensory’s NLP based processors with TrulyHandsfree™ Voice Control. As you read the book, the Story Buddy™ listens and interacts appropriate when it hears you say different phrases from the book.
I knew the concept was great when we first did Jingle the Husky Pup with Hallmark. I also knew that these products were selling really well, and I even knew that TrulyHandsfree™ Voice Control is the MOST AMAZING technology to ever come out of Sensory (Hey – I just got an email from the manager of one of the larger speech organizations in the world and he said “we keep trying to break your TrulyHandsfree™ 2.0 beta technology, but we just can’t seem to make it fail!”)
What I didn’t know is what an EXCELLENT job Hallmark does in story writing, character creation, and putting the whole thing together to make a really fun experience that really works! The book starts off with Watson wondering why grass grows up and rain falls down… I love that line!
Kudos to you Hallmark…now I gotta go buy a Watson for my lobby!
May 6, 2011
For far too long, speech recognition just hasn’t worked well enough to be usable for everyday purposes. Even simple command and control by voice had been barely functional and unreliable…but times, they are a changing! Today speech recognition works quite well and is widely used in computer and smart phone applications…and I believe we are rapidly converging on the Holy Grail of Speech – making a recognition and response system that can be virtually indistinguishable from a human (a really smart human with immaculate spelling skills and fluency in many languages!)
I think there are 4 important components to what I’d call the Holy Grail in Speech:
Anyways, reputable companies are starting to combine and market these kinds of functions today, and I’d guess it’s a just a matter of five to ten years until you can have a conversation with a computer or smartphone that’s so good, it is difficult to tell whether it’s a live person or not!