Automatic Speech Recognition


June 2002
Volume 13 No. 6

Market, Investment and Technical News of the Emerging Speech Technology Industry



Telephone IVR – Applications

BeVocal/Screaming Media & Virgin Mobile

InfoTalk and CAAS Singapore

IVB/SpeechWorks & Nieman Marcus

Loqundo & Italian Railroad

Maxxar At Anheuser-Busch

OnMobile/Oraneg in India

RLMSoftare/Aumtech at JetBlue Airways

ScanSoft/Syswill at KTF

AOC uses ScanSoft RealSpeak for Le Mans

Ti3 Time Entry for Manpower

SpeechWorks Change Address for Microcell

Travelocity Enhancements

VeCommerce Betting During World Cup

Voiceware/Vasic & Lycos World Cup

Telephone IVR - Products

Axway & Elan Partner

Com2I Using Elan TTS

General Magic magicTalk enhamced

InfoTalk Air

InterVoice-Brite VoiceXML 2.0 Browser

NetByTel Voice-enable Survey

NetByTel v-Government

Plum Group VoiceXML Outbound Module

Unisys Launches Voice Portal Solution

VoiceGenie/Audium Launch AudiumGenie

Telephone IVR – Partnerships/Financials

Aspect using SpeechWorks Speechify

Integro Networks & Elan

Loquendo/VoxPilot Partner

Metaphor NL & Voice Genie Partner

Necsy/PIKA partner

Prospectus Group & Target Create Portal

Sirsi/ScanSoft Partner for Libraries

InfoSpace & ScanSoft RealSpeak

Suit vs "Millionaire Reinstated

Telephone SPE Messaging - Applications/Products/ Partnerships/Financial

Appiant Restructuring

Appiant/OpenWave Accord

Comverse Unveils Impact

Glenayre adds ScanSoft RealSpeak

MATERNA/Octave Partner

NMS/Neketec/NETCOM at Pegaso PCS

Preferred Voice SAM

Preferred Voice & PSC Wireless Launch

Preferred Voice Delays Fundraising

Telephonetics/Vodat Solutions Partner

Voyant MobileMeeting

Telephone Enterprise Messaging – Applications/Products

Active Voice Repartee Unified Messaging

Adomo Product Enhancements

Atos Origin Using Elan in UM System

OneVoice MobileVoice Enterprise

Philips at University of Pennsylvania

Phonetic Systems at BayCare Health

Phonetic Systems Version 5.0 Search Engine

PIKA/dsy Informationssyteme Partner

Telephone Enterprise Messaging – Partnerships/Financial

Ivoice Distribution via CYGCOM

IVoice Compatible with KeyVoice

Phonetic Systems’ "Voice Without Limits"

VoiceGenie/Phonetic Systems VR

VoiceGenie/Speechvantage Partner

PIKA/iQ NetSolutions Partner

VoiceGenie/Convergent Partner

ACN to Distribute Verb Exchange

Telephone Operator Services - Applications/Products/ Partnerships/Financial

NexVerse/Tellme Partner  

Telephone Tools – Products/Partnerships/Financial

Aculab/Pronexus Partner

Audiocodes Ipmedia Server

Envox Secures 2nd Round Funding

NSC/TalkerNet Partner

Plum VoiceXML adds Festival TTS

SpeechWorks Introduces T.S.T.E.P

Telisma New ASR Pricing Model

Embedded Telematics – Applications/Products

Fortemedia Single Chip Solution

IDS Using Elan TTS for Navigator

Mobile Knowledge Taxi Dispatch in Singapore

Pioneer DVD Navigation System

ScanSoft RealSpeak Compact DSK

Embedded Telematics – Applications/Products/Partnerships

ART & SVOX Partner

Clarity in Partnership with Peiker

Fonix & TI OMAP

Fulcrum Voice Technologies/EADS Telecom

Wingcast Folds

Embedded Appliances – Products/Partnerships/Financial

ArialPhone Reseller Program VoiceSignal in Hasbro Aloha Stitch Toy

Desktop – Applications/Products

3dMe Character Messaging

Andrea Superbeam Array Microphone

Ectaco English0Dutch Dictionary

Ectaco Russian-English Dictionary

Ectaco English-Chinese Dictionary

Fonix iSpeak for Pocket PC

NEC Japanese-English Dictionary

ScanSoft DNS XP for Europe

WENR/VCA Voice-controlled DVD Player

Zform Introduces Zform Poker for Assistive

Desktop – Partnerships/Financial

Expresiv Obtains Funding, Changes Name MedQuist to Acquire Lanier Healthcare

Base Technology – Products/Partnerships/Financial

Elan Speech Sees The Day

Fonix Funding

LumenVox Linus SRE

Dahl of Unisys Leads W3C Multimodal Group

ScanSoft/Nuance Partner on RealSpeak TTS W3C Speech Grammar Specification

Changing Places

Market Reports

In-Stat/MDR "Talking to Dollars: Speech Recognition Market Overview, Segmentation, and Forcast" Datamonitor "Voice Portals and Applications Report"


The Emperor is Naked

It’s Natural Speech, Not Natural Language, Stupid!  


Telephone - IVR Applications

BeVocal and Screaming Media Make Virgin Mobile USA Services Sing: Virgin Mobile USA, LLC, announced that it has called on ScreamingMedia (NASDAQ: SCRM)(New York, NY) and BeVocal(Mt View, CA) to provide voice-driven entertainment applications for its VirginXtras - a suite of music, fun, groups and entertainment features. New York City-based ScreamingMedia provides information, technology and tools for a range of industries and platforms. Designed to entertain and enthrall both teens and young adults, the VirginXtras are a host of features that let Virgin Mobile customers listen to, send and vote on music clips, schedule a celebrity wake-up call or catch up on jokes, rumors and gossip - all through the use of simple voice commands. The VirginXtras are a host of integrated voice, WAP and Web applications available to all Virgin Mobile USA subscribers. ScreamingMedia's information services paired with BeVocal's voice platforms and applications software power this Virgin-branded content:

> Rescue Ring - That blind date in two hours could be fun-or a major disaster. Virgin Mobile customers can schedule a Rescue Ring to call them up the perfect "escape time." The Rescue Ring features totally original Virgin Mobile content and outrageous personalities. And if the date's going well, they can always tell the "caller" that they'll get back to them tomorrow!
> Wake-Up Call - For those who need a little help getting out of bed in the morning, Virgin Mobile USA offers its customers the chance to wake up to totally original Virgin Mobile messages from a variety of cheeky personalities.
> Hit List - The Hit Lists lets the world know what music is worth spreading around. Virgin Mobile customers can use their handsets to listen to and vote on a top ten list of hit songs. After voting, customers can hear the percentage of other subscribers who either "loved it" or "hated it."
> Music Messenger - Music Messenger let Virgin Mobile customers tap into a top ten song list, and then shoot an SMS message to a friend encouraging them to check out a hot new track.
> Fun Clip - Fun Clips gives Virgin Mobile customers a good way to pass the time. They can use their handset to listen to various audio clips, jokes, gossip and more. Then they can share the fun by texting friends to get them to listen in too.

Virgin Mobile is solely committed to designing its cellular products and services around the needs of young Americans. The pricing is simple - just 25 cents per minute for the first ten minutes of each day, and then 10 cents for every minute thereafter. Using as much or as little airtime as they want, customers can simply Top-Up their Virgin Mobile account as needed. Virgin Mobile USA, LLC is a joint venture between Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group, and Sprint, which operates the largest all-digital, all-PCS nationwide wireless network. Established in October 2001, Virgin Mobile claims to be the first mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) in the United States. Under the arrangement with Sprint, Virgin Mobile will utilize Sprint's wireless network to deliver service to its customers, while retaining all responsibility for customer service and subscriber maintenance. Virgin Mobile's service includes long distance, voicemail, caller ID, call waiting, text messaging and directory assistance. All customers will also receive VirginXtras. Virgin Mobile cell phones will be available in more than 3,000 U.S. retail outlets, including Best Buy, Circuit City, Follett Higher Education Group, Media Play, Sam Goody, Target Stores and Virgin Megastores. The Company's Top-Up cards will also be available in more than 8,000 U.S. Circle K, 7-Eleven and Winn-Dixie stores. and Virgin Mobile's Central Intelligence number at 888-322-1122. ScreamingMedia provides information, technology and tools to the enterprise. 650-210-8600 or visit Contact: Kristi Gates, Virgin Mobile USA, 908-607-4029, , Jennifer Deitsch, BeVocal, Inc., 650-641-1477, Steve Spencer, CTO of ScreamingMedia

Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore Offers InfoTalk-Enabled Flight Schedule Service: Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) has adopted InfoTalk's ((Hong Kong) speech technology, InfoTalk RSVP, for its Telephone Flight Inquiry Service (TELEFIQS). With this voice-enabled flight information hotline, travelers in Singapore will be able to obtain detailed flight information by simply speaking into any phone. When looking for necessary flight information, travelers can simply say the destination or origin to retrieve the flight arrival and departure schedule and information respectively. For example, a caller can simply say "Hong Kong" to obtain the departure information of the flights to Hong Kong, or simply SQ868 if the caller knows the flight number. By deploying the speech technology into the inquiry system, CAAS achieves their goal in service enhancement. Contact: +852 2190 9600. Dr. Alex Leung, CEO of InfoTalk, Mr. Wong Woon Liong, Director-General of Civil Aviation

Neiman Marcus Continues Customer-Focused Legacy By Delivering Speech-Enabled Applications From InterVoice-Brite: Neiman Marcus (Dallas, TX) has deployed InterVoice-Brite's(Nasdaq: INTV)(Dallas, TX) speech-enabled customer service applications to provide a premier shopping and service experience for its customers. Neiman Marcus has deployed four speech-enabled customer service applications that allow information access, regardless of location or time. The applications include speech recognition technology from SpeechWorks International, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPWX). Neiman Marcus is one of the first major retailers to benefit from the power of speech technologies. Over 65,000 Neiman Marcus customers have effectively used the new speech systems since they were deployed in the Spring of 2002. The speech applications can understand a wide variety of accents to provide Neiman Marcus' global clientele with the following services: -- Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman Customer Service Application; -- Using speech recognition, customers can speak naturally into any phone to receive credit card balance, payment and bill history; -- Neiman Marcus InCircle Balance - Exclusive Customer-Recognition Program; -- InCircle customers can obtain their point balance for the InCircle Rewards program, recognized as the first and bestcustomer loyalty program in the retail industry; -- Neiman Marcus Gift Card Application; -- Customers can receive balance information for Neiman Marcus gift cards by simply speaking their gift card number versus entering numbers through traditional touch-tone applications; -- Neiman Marcus Accounts Payable Application; -- All Neiman Marcus vendors including designers such as Ralph Lauren, Gucci, Prada, Anne Klein and other famous names in retail, can research their payment history and accounts using this speech application anytime, day or night. Speech technologies from Neiman Marcus stores, one of the world's best-known specialty retailers, operates 33 stores nationwide. Neiman Marcus Stores are a part of The Neiman Marcus Group (NYSE: NMGa). Contact: Rob-Roy J. Graham, Chief Financial Officer, 972-454-8712, or Stephanie Leonard, 972-454-8231, or or Leah Lesser of SpeechWorks International, Inc., 617-428-4444, or Earl McKoon, telecommunications analyst, Neiman Marcus Group

Loquendo Automated Railway Information Service: The automated speech-interaction information service realised by Loquendo(Turin, Italy) for Italy's national railway network & services company Trenitalia - has brought outstanding customer services results. The service, which is known as FS Informa, provides customers throughout Italy with the very latest information on train travel over any phone(wireline or wireless) through flexible, user-friendly speech interaction. Last minute information is automatically integrated with regular information in real time to give customers 100% reliable information on timetables, services, train fares, industrial action, delays, etc. The system is managing a steady flow of 30,000 calls every day - 90% of which are managed completely automatically! This means that routine calls are dealt with automatically and human agents are left free to deal with more complex requests, while the system keeps them a hundred percent up to date. The system is now a widely used reference point for Italian rail travellers and is fostering an increasingly positive perception of the railwayservice provided by Trenitalia. The capacity to successfully manage extremely high call peaks was again confirmed during the period leading up to the strikes that took place throughout Italy in May 2002. The service automatically managed 70,000 calls from customers requiring information on departing and cancelled trains! Loquendo is a Telecom Italia Group and its activities span from Europe to the U.S. and Latin America. Loquendo technology powers over 1,000,000 calls daily.

Anheuser-Busch Employees' Credit Union to Implement Maxxar's Transcend ACD System: Maxxar Corporation, a Microsoft Certified Partner and an ISO 9001 certified company specializing in interactive information solutions and the development and distribution of products providing computer telephony integration, announced that Anheuser-Busch Employees' Credit Union (ABECU)( St. Louis, Mo) has selected Maxxar's Transcend Automated Call Distributor (ACD) to guide call center agents during calls from members. ABECU is the third largest credit union in Missouri with more than $550 million in assets and 75,000 members. The credit union selected the system as part of an overall member relationship management program, and the system is set to go live in September 2002. The Transcend ACD system will enhance the reporting capabilities of the credit union with the more than 70 detailed reports (1600 data elements available for user-defined reports) on phone, e-mail and Web interactions. In addition, the system will also benefit the credit union by supporting multiple forms of Internet interaction (text chat, scheduled callbacks, net meetings, e-mail routing and tracking). Anheuser-Busch Employees' Credit Union (ABECU) is a full-service financial institution offering a wide variety of products and services to their members nationwide and around the world. ABECU is currently ranked as a "Top 150" credit union in the U.S. and is a recognized leader in the development of interstate delivery of financial services. ABECU has more than $550 million in assets, 22 locations and 75,000 members. Contact: Maxxar Corp., Nichole Bigley, 678-781-7229, Paula Anderson, manager of Marketing Communications for ABECU

OnMobile And Orange, India Launch Multimodal World Cup Football Application With Interactive Coverage Of Live Matches: OnMobile Systems, Inc. (Los Altos, CA), a supplier of multimodal wireless services, and Orange, Mumbai's preferred cellular service, announced the launch of a multimodal World Cup Football application, delivering audio action replays from live matches to cellular subscribers in Mumbai. Orange offered subscribers access to audio World Cup football coverage via voice and SMS. OnMobile's interactive World Cup Football application ran on its multimodal platform, MMP2500, in Orange's GSM network. Subscribers could select their favorite World Cup teams and matches via voice, SMS or the web to receive SMS alerts notifying them of important action based on their preferences. Orange subscribers were able to call directly into the system from the alert received and listen to audio action replays from live events, as well as navigate through earlier action highlights or commentary from other matches. In addition to score and goal updates, Orange subscribers could choose to receive alerts for other action - such as red cards, injuries and penalty shoot-outs - which OnMobile found to be of interest to football fans while doing research for the application. The service has voice, SMS and web interfaces to provide enhanced usability for Orange subscribers. As the application is part of Orange's VOX services, users can transition to other OnMobile-developed applications such as Cricket, Stocks, News, and Horoscopes after listening to World Cup coverage. OnMobile worked with key partners, such as Nuance Communications, TEAMtalk, a provider of original sports content and Infosys Technologies Limited (NASDAQ: INFY), a global software service company, to deploy this user-friendly solution. Orange first deployed OnMobile's multimodal platform and application software in November of 2001 to introduce innovative services in India. The VOX Services have achieved a remarkable 25% adoption rate since their introduction. Orange is the preferred mobile phone provider in Mumbai, offering a wide range of Innovative and user-friendly services to over 4.56 lakh subscribers (COAI figures, April 2002). OnMobile Systems, Inc delivers a multimodal platform and application solutions to wireless carriers, MVNOs and service providers worldwide. OnMobile's MMP2500 solution allows wireless subscribers to access information in multiple modes - voice, text and graphics - and transition seamlessly between applications. www.onmobilecom Contact: Leigh Anne Bass, OnMobile Systems, Inc., 650-229-1294, Arvind Rao, CEO of OnMobile, Sanjeev Vohra, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Hutchison Max Telecom

FlightView Makes JetBlue's Toll-Free Telephone Service Real Time: RLM Software(Boston, MA) announced that thanks to its FlightView flight tracking software, JetBlue Airways' toll-free telephone number now provides callers with automated, up-to-the-minute flight information. FlightView tracks JetBlue aircraft in real time using radar-based flight data and integrates this real-time data with JetBlue's flight schedules and movement messages generated directly by JetBlue dispatchers. The result is an innovative customer service which allows JetBlue callers to track a flight number, either through speech recognition or their telephone keypad, and access the latest flight information including current flight status, estimated "actual" arrival time and gate assignments. JetBlue has used FlightView for its Systems Operations since May 2000 to support the carrier's on-time performance. In October 2000, the airline also added FlightView flight tracking to its web site as a free service to its customers. JetBlue's online flight tracking service, like the new telephone service, combines real-time flight data with schedule information and flight dispatch movement messages. Both services now offer customers an immediate and accurate "snapshot" of any JetBlue flight including: a. Status (scheduled, planned, waiting for takeoff, delayed, diverted or cancelled); b. Scheduled departure and arrival times; c. Departure and arrival airport; d. Actual estimated arrival time (calculated by FlightView); e. Gate assignments. Users of the flight tracking service on can also view a live map showing an aircraft's actual current location, speed and altitude. FlightView integrates directly with an airline's dispatch software, making implementation a simple process. The IVR (Integrated Voice Response) system software for JetBlue's new telephone service is provided by Aumtech Inc., a provider of computer telephony solutions for the airline industry. Celebrating over twenty years of excellence in flight information technology, RLM Software is the leading provider of real-time flight tracking products for airlines, corporate aviation, ground transportation and the travel industry. RLM Software offers several FlightView products including: -- FlightView Workstation for dispatch and operations professionals in the aviation, airport operations and ground transportation industries. -- FlightView Private Label which allows any company to add real-time flight tracking to their own web site to attract and retain online customers. FlightView Private Label is seamlessly integrated into a company's web site but hosted on FlightView Web Servers. -- FlightView XML transmits XML format data to organizations in the travel industry. or call RLM Software 617-787-4200. Contact: Lisa Cavalieri, RLM Software, Inc., 978-449-9680, Aumtech, Bill Jones, 804-967-9002 Christian D. Rishel, director of interactive marketing at JetBlue Airways

ScanSoft RealSpeak Selected as the Voice for the 2002 FIFA World Cup Information Portal -- ScanSoft Partner Syswill and MPC Implement Multi-lingual System for Korea Telecom Freetel Co. Ltd., the Official Mobile Communications Sponsor of the 2002 World Cup: ScanSoft(Nasdaq: SSFT) (Peabody, MA) RealSpeak was the synthesized voice for the official Voice Information Portal (VIP) for the event. ScanSoft's RealSpeak was used as the synthesized voice behind the multilingual service offered by KT Freetel Co. (KTF)(Seoul, Korea), the largest mobile communications company based on CDMA technology in the world with approximately 20 million subscribers. A team of companies including KTF, Korean-based integrators Syswill and MPC, Nuance and ScanSoft has provided technology and services for the portal. The system was designed by Syswill, a solution provider for ScanSoft technology in Korea, and implemented by MPC, a leading system integrator in Korea, and Korea Telecom Freetel Co. Ltd. (KTF), the Official Sponsor of Mobile Communications for the 2002 FIFA World Cup. From May 31 to June 30, the top soccer teams from 32 nations, with players representing 132 nationalities, competed to become the 2002 FIFA World Cup champion. With venues in Korea and Japan, the tournament activities garnered an aggregated audience of 60 billion people, about a dozen times the world population. The tournament was held in 10 cities within Korea and Japan. Distributing information to such a large and distributed audience represented a challenge to tournament organizers, one that was met by the KTF World Cup VIP, which will provide immediate, phone-based access to World Cup schedules, scores, news, tourist information and weather. The KTF World Cup VIP delivers information in Chinese, English, Japanese and Korean. The KTF World Cup VIP will help visitors conveniently access 2002 World Cup information, including game times and scores, public transportation schedules, hotel information and tourist attractions. Serving a spectrum of visitors, the service can be navigated entirely by voice. Contact: International ScanSoft, Inc., Vanessa Richter, + 32 9 239 8031, or US ScanSoft, Inc., Jane Van Saun, 978-977-2114,

Automobile Club de L'Ouest Selects ScanSoft RealSpeak for the 24 Hours of Le Mans: AOC (Automobile Club de L'Ouest), organizer of the world-famous motor race "Les 24 heures du Mans", has selected ScanSoft's RealSpeak for its first speech-enabled race information service. Developed and hosted by the Paris-based NetVoice Telecom, the Le Mans AudioTel information service used ScanSoft RealSpeak to convert text-based race information into human-sounding synthesized speech. Using RealSpeak, the Le Mans AudioTel information service provides race supporters and enthusiasts with immediate access to Le Mans team news, schedules and standings using fixed or mobile phones from anywhere in the world. The Le Mans AudioTel service was accessible in French and English from June 10, 6:00 GTM until June 21 2002, 8:OO GTM . The service had a cost of 0.34 Euros per minute. Automobile Club de L'Ouest ACO is an organizer of car and bike races based in Le Mans, France. NetVoice Telecom, a private company based in Paris, France, develops and markets converging communication solutions to help organizations solve its critical business issues, reduce costs and improve customer care. Contact: International, Scansoft Belgium BVBA, Vanessa Richter, 32 9 239 8031, or US, ScanSoft, Inc., Jane Van Saun, 978-977-2114, Jean Marc Desnues, Communication director at the AOC

Ti3 Streamlines Time Entry for Manpower Employees Nationwide: Manpower, the global staffing and workforce management firm, has signed a two-year contract for an automated timesheet solution with Ti3 (NASDAQ:TALX). Ti3 will provide Manpower with an integrated solution for time capture, online timesheet approval and online reporting for Manpower employees across the country. Employees will be able to submit their timesheets via the Web or over the telephone using interactive voice response (IVR) technology. Ti3, a TALX Company, provides turnkey e-commerce solutions that are accessible via Internet, interactive voice response (IVR), computer telephony integration (CTI) and other technologies. The company's premier solution, FasTime, automates time and attendance reporting and can be fully integrated into a company's payroll system. Ti3 processes millions of timesheets every year. All of the company's self-service solutions are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. TALX Corporation is a leading outsourced service provider for the human resource, benefits and payroll markets. TALX holds a leadership position in two key employment-related services - automated employment and income verification services via The Work Number and unemployment cost management services through its acquisition of The Frick Company and the unemployment cost management business of GatesMcDonald. TALX is also a provider of automated benefits enrollment services and a provider of automated time entry services. 314-214-7000 Contact: Ti3, a TALX Company, Laura Browder, 314-214-7224, Mark Gambill, vice president of marketing for Manpower North America

SpeechWorks Launches Bilingual Speech-Activated Change of Address Service for More Than 1.2 Million Microcell Subscribers: SpeechWorks International, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPWX)(Boston, MA) announced the launch of a speech-activated customer service application for Microcell Telecommunications Inc. (Nasdaq: MICT)(Montreal, Canada), a provider of wireless Personal Communications Services (PCS) in Canada under the Fido brand name. With this service, Microcell's more than 1.2 million customers can use their voice and any phone to automatically update their account address for billing information. Callers may speak in either French or English and be understood immediately by the system. The system runs on a platform from iVB Enterprise Solutions, a division of InterVoice-Brite, Inc. (Nasdaq: INTV), distributed by Norstan Canada Ltd., a division of Norstan, Inc. Microcell Telecommunications is a Canadian wireless communications company active in three primary areas: Personal Communications Services (PCS), wireless Internet, and investments. Microcell PCS, a division of Microcell Telecommunications, is responsible for the marketing of Fido Service in Canada and has over 1.2 million retail customers. Microcell Telecommunications has been a public company since October 15, 1997, and is a member of the TSE 300, TSE 200 and S&P/TSE Canadian SmallCap indices. Microcell's head office is located in Montreal and the Company employs more than 1,900 people across Canada. and Contact: SpeechWorks International, Leah Lesser/Marie Ruzzo, 617-428-4444, or Microcell Telecommunications, Karen Berkhout, 604-601-1062, or InterVoice-Brite, Inc., Stephanie Leonard, 972-454-8231, Brings Flight Information for 56 Airlines to the Phone: (Fort Worth, TX) announced extensive enhancements to its automated, interactive voice services, now allowing travelers to receive real- time updates on departure, arrival and gate information for flights from 56 airlines. The company's flight information product, previously only available through mobile applications and the Internet, is now accessible through's toll-free, voice-activated customer service hotline system at 888-TRAVELOCITY. Travelocity found that about 10 percent of calls to their customer service centers were requests for flight information, and they answer over 40,000 requests for flight information online each day. To access the automated system via phone, callers simply speak the date, name of the airline and flight number, or departure and arrival cities. Speech recognition software extracts flight information from the Web site and communicates it back to callers. The automated voice system mirrors the traveler information available in the "Departures and Arrivals" section of the homepage. The expansion to the toll-free number is the second customer flight information product available through this year. The company introduced "My Messaging," a suite of flight notification tools, in March 2002., a database-driven travel marketing and transaction company, provides Internet and wireless reservations information for more than 700 airlines, more than 55,000 hotels and more than 50 car rental companies. In addition, offers more than 6,500 vacation packages, tour and cruise departures and a vast database of destination and interest information. Travelocity employs more than 1,000 customer service professionals, has sold more than 22 million airline tickets and has registered more than 34 million members. is wholly owned by Sabre Holdings Corporation (NYSE: TSG), a leading provider of technology and marketing services for the travel . Contact: Judy Haveson 212-554-7425, Janelle O'Haugherty 972-488-4790, Russ Smith, senior vice president of operations-customer service at Travelocity.

VeCommerce ensures all punters have a bet during 2002 FIFA World Cup: VeCommerce Limited’s (ASX:VCM)( Sydney Australia) VeBet based voice-enabled wagering application has gone live at Ladbrokes in the UK. Ladbrokes, the betting and gaming arm of Hilton Group plc and largest bookmaker in the world, launched the new service called 'EasyBet' to coincide with the start of the 2002 FIFA World Cup. Using speech recognition from Nuance (NASDAQ:NUAN) and communications technology from Aculab, EasyBet allows users to talk directly to Ladbrokes' computer systems, placing their wagers without the need to use the telephone keypad or wait in a queue for an available operator to answer their call. EasyBet callers can say team or individual player names directly - eg "Give me a price for Ireland to beat Germany?" or "A fiver on Beckham to score first". EasyBet would then respond with "Republic of Ireland to win against Germany is 7 to 2" or "England versus Argentina, David Beckham first to score is 10 to 1". The service enables Ladbrokes to ensure that large increases in call volumes can be handled in the run up to major events such as the World Cup final or The Derby. Application development took place in Sydney with localisation and implementation being undertaken by VeCommerce's European operations over the last six months. Following its success during the World Cup, the EasyBet system will be extended to cover a wide variety of sports including horse and greyhound racing, league and cup football and other sports such as motor racing and tennis. Currently in use in Australia and North America, VeCommerce's VeBet application has taken approximately 10 million bets to date, easily handling volumes of over 150,000 calls on big race days Contact: Paul Magee, Managing Director, VeCommerce Limited, tel: +61 2 9428 9555, Nick Flude, Marketing Manager, VeCommerce Limited, +61 2 9428 9903 Ciaran O'Brien, RED +44 20 7465 7711 / +44 7802 209674 John O'Reilly, managing director of Ladbrokes eGaming

Voiceware provided voice prompts using its high quality text-to-speech for Lycos Asia's World Cup Live Update SMS Service: Voiceware Co., Ltd. (Seoul, Korea) has supplied their high quality Text-To-Speech, VoiceText to Lycos Asia ( ) for its World Cup Live Update SMS Service. Lycos Asia World Cup Live Update SMS Service provided subscribers with Goal by Goal Report, Penalty Scored or Missed, Red Card, Yellow Card, Substitutions and Match Status through SMS. To subscribe, users called 1900-912-2767 and followed the voice prompts to register for the match they wanted to get SMS alerts for. They were charged SGD $5 per match. Users need to be a subscriber to a Singapore mobile network provider (either Singtel, M1 or Starhub) and own a phone which could send and receive SMS. Users were able to call in at any time to book the matches they wanted SMS updates for current or advance booking of matches based on FIFA match numbers. The IVR system was provided by Vasic Pte., Ltd. ( ) and live SMS Feed was provided by AFP (Agence France-Presse). Lycos Asia is a joint venture between Lycos, Inc . and Singapore Telecommunications Limited The purpose of the joint venture aims to roll out a pan-Asian internet portal across Southeast Asia, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and India. By positioning the portal as a hub and comprehensive network of sites, Lycos Asia seeks to serve all the basic needs of its Internet visitors, acting as the home base and primary Web resource for its users. or Ginnie Keum, Voiceware Co., Ltd. / Marketing Assistant Manager, +82-2-3016-8511(D)/+82-3016-8501(F)/+82-11-319-5580(M)

Telephone - IVR Products/Services

Axway, part of Sopra Group, has chosen Elan's TTS to speech-enable its surveillance server, Axway Open Process Alert: Axway Open Process Alert is a universal surveillance server, it is multi-platform, mutli-standard, multilingual, and capable of giving a pre-defined alert to the people in charge of that particular problem, either in sequential or general mode, using information from OS, MIB or applications. With Elan's TTS, Axway Open Process Alert's speech module can read out information from the system, in any of 8 languages, through different alert equipment such as loud-speakers, telephones, or mobile phones. Axway Open Process Alert is the only alert software for information system surveillance to have a text-to-speech module. Axway Open Process Alert is available in french, english, german, spanish, italian, russian and polish, and is sold in France, UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Luxemburg, Holland, Switzerland, USA and Africa. Axway's capability of providing turnkey solutions for specific needs has already allowed over 5000 sites worldwide to be equipped with their operational solutions. Ccontact: Elan Speech, Caroline HouŽl - +33 (0)5 61 36 89 14

Com2i, specialized in high-value voice services, using Elan Speech Cube in their C-VOX and SERV-CTI solutions, have joined forces with ISMAP to offer a location-based guidance system over the phone, with Elan's TTS: The joint efforts of Com2i and ISMAP now enable easier access to textual information such as road directions. While on the move, without expensive high-tech equipment, the users can access a high-value service, guided by Elan's voice. After indicating their place of departure and arrival to the call-center operator, the users are re-routed onto the IVR server that uses Elan's text-to-speech. This allows them to listen to the directions they require, either step by step as they go, or in one go while preparing the journey. This phone-based guidance solution is designed for operators and call-center managers, and will be showcased at the SECA trade show in Paris, on stand F24a. and Ccontact: Elan Speech, Caroline HouŽl - +33 (0)5 61 36 89 14 –

General Magic Unveils Enhanced magicTalk Enterprise Platform: General Magic, Inc. (Nasdaq:GMGC)(Sunnyvale, CA) announced a series of enhancements to its magicTalk Enterprise Platform suite of software that increases the ability of enterprises to develop and deploy self-service voice applications accessible by telephone. Available now, the magicTalk Enterprise Platform 1.5 integrates technologies from General Magic's recently signed OEM partner InterVoice-Brite, Inc., for the delivery of a wide range of computer-telephony integration (CTI) and other telephony functions to the market for next-generation interactive voice response (IVR) solutions that leverage Internet/Web technologies. New features in the magicTalk Enterprise Platform for making Web-based IVR a key channel for use by companies in extending voice self-service to customers and other constituents include: -- Voice alerts and notifications. Using the magicTalk Enterprise Platform companies can now "push" targeted information over the voice channel to any device to gain recipient's attention and/or spur action. Expanded outbound call support within the magicTalk Enterprise Platform, including live call detection and live agent transfer, enables enterprises to broadcast alerts and "push" notifications across the voice channel and also provide the recipient with a voice user interface to take action based on the alert. -- VoiceXML 2.0 compliant browser. The magicTalk Enterprise Platform supports voice applications written to the latest version of the VoiceXML specification - VoiceXML 2.0. Bundled with the magicTalk Enterprise Platform is a front-end component called the magicTalk VoiceXML Gateway that manages the VoiceXML-based voice user interface for voice self-service transactions and inquiries over any wireless/wireline phone. The magicTalk VoiceXML gateway recognizes caller's input and requests and presents information to the caller either in the form of pre-recorded prompts or personalized voice responses dynamically generated from up-to-date enterprise data. -- Out-of-the-box telephony functions. The telephony functions in the magicTalk VoiceXML Gateway provide the ability to answer, screen and transfer large volumes of calls simultaneously. Inbound calls can be screened using Automatic Number Identification (ANI) and Dialed Number Identification (DNIS) recognition. Options for transferring calls include Blind Transfer, Music-on-Hold, Digital Answer Detect and Smart Transfer. Outbound call support allows push notifications. User data input and menu selection can be done either through spoken input or through the touchtone keypad (DTMF). -- CTI support. The magicTalk Enterprise Platform supports the most widely used computer-telephony interfaces. Available CTI interfaces include Aspect Contact Server; Aspect Application Bridge CTI v5, v7; TSAPI Passageway (Avaya/Lucent G3); Cisco Intelligent Contact Manager with Service Control, Dialogic CT-Connect CTI v3; Genesys 6.1 IVR and T-server; TAPI 2.0 CTI Interface; OAI Intecom; HP CCM v5.8; Quintus VOX Server v5.0; Nortel Meridian Link/Interlink; CT-Connect 5.0; 3G Support; Analog to Digital T1 or E1 connectivity; ISDN, CAS, SS7 protocol support for both AT&T and Nortel, including NFAS; Port-to-Port switching, bridging, conferencing and full application level call control. Contact: UpStart Communications, Andrew Miller, 510-457-3117, Paula Skokowski, General Magic VP Marketing, Laura Crowley, 408-774-4457,

Air Travel Industry Takes Off with InfoTalk-Air: InfoTalk Corporation, a leading provider of multi-lingual conversational speech understanding technology, announced the general release of InfoTalk-Air, a voice-enabled solution specially designed for the air travel industry. InfoTalk-Air employs InfoTalk RSVP, a complete suite of speech technologies, to help the air travel industry achieve two simultaneous goals: enhancing customer services and reducing operational costs. Since 2000, InfoTalk-Air has been successfully deployed in premier airports in Asia Pacific, including the Shenzhen International Airport in China, the Hong Kong International Airport and the Singapore Changi Airport. InfoTalk-Air services callers and travelers from everywhere who speak various languages with a diversity of accents. The system is designed to handle mixed and multiple languages that are commonly used in Asia Pacific.. ‘Speak whenever you want’ feature wastes no time for callers to listen to all the prompts. Barge-in technology empowers InfoTalk-Air to understand callers even if they start speaking in the middle of a prompt or a message. ‘Spot whatever you require’, screens calls of interests for customer service providers allowing specific actions to be taken when particular words or phrases are being spotted. Voice-mining technology empowers a system to enhance work process and maximize the effective use of resources. For the callers, InfoTalk-Air saves the hassles of going through a long list of touch-tone options. With InfoTalk-Air’s voice-activated interface, callers will be able to access the flight schedules by simply saying the airline names or the arrival/departure cities even they may forget the flight numbers. Through the solution, callers can just speak to any telephone to instantly receive the most up-to-date information, including flight schedules, airlines, airport facilities and transportation . Contact: +852 2190 9600. Dr. Alex Leung, CEO of InfoTalk.

InterVoice-Brite Announces VoiceXML 2.0 Compliant Browser: iVB Enterprise Solutions, a division of InterVoice-Brite, Inc. (Nasdaq: INTV)(Dallas, TX) announced the general availability of its new OneVoice Media Gateway product supporting VoiceXML 2.0 for the deployment of integrated voice and web self-service applications. The OneVoice Media Gateway, a natural evolution of the Company's OneVoice platform, is a full-featured media server providing speech recognition and text-to-speech (TTS) capabilities. iVB Enterprise Solutions' VoiceXML 2.0 compliant browser within the OneVoice Media Gateway harnesses the Company's existing software infrastructure and expertise to provide reliability in VoiceXML-powered environments. The Media Gateway also provides a set of administration tools that focus on configuration management, monitoring and alerting. The Voice Browser leverages the computer telephony integration (CTI) interfaces found on the Company's traditional platform as well as integrates with the latest releases from leading speech technology providers including Nuance, ScanSoft and SpeechWorks. The Company is committed to supporting and influencing the evolving World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards and is a member of the VoiceXML Forum. The OneVoice Media Gateway is generally available today and can either be purchased as a premise-based solution or can be housed and managed at an off site location as part of InterVoice-Brite's Managed Services Offering (MSP) for maximum deployment flexibility. Contact: Rob-Roy J. Graham, Chief Financial Officer, 972-454-8712, or Stephanie Leonard, 972-454-8231, or

NetByTel Launches Voice-Enabled Survey Solution, Version 3.0 -- Technology Develops and Deploys Intelligent Voice-Enabled Solutions in Real-Time: NetByTel announced a suite of in-bound survey solutions that listen and understand the caller's voice, are developed and deployed real-time, and provide information for substantially less costs than paper or live agent surveys. Uses of the NetByTel Survey Solution can be heard at . Examples of solutions include: -- Customer Satisfaction Surveys -- Applicant Screening Surveys -- Employee Satisfaction Surveys -- Quality Assurance Surveys -- Polling Surveys. Phone surveys are expensive to administer and web surveys only reach the on-line world. The NetByTel Survey Solution, Version 3.0 is extremely versatile and allows clients to design, develop and deploy their own voice-enabled surveys via a web-based interface. As examples, a call center executive can create a Customer Satisfaction or Quality Assurance Survey to ask customers if they were satisfied with the service they just experienced and get the results immediately via web-based reporting. An HR manager can quickly create an Applicant Screening Survey to intelligently pre-screen candidates and capture their name and phone number based on their qualifications. These voice-enabled phone self-service solutions have been proven with a number of NetByTel clients including ABN AMRO, MicroWarehouse, and, among others. NetByTel partners with SpeechWorks (Nasdaq: SPWX) for the underlying speech recognition technology used by this new innovative solution. The NetByTel Survey Solution provides: -- Client control with a web-based interface for application creation and management -- Intelligent branching that can route the caller to specifically tailored questions or a live agent based on the callers' response -- Immediate information feedback via real-time, web-based graphical reporting system -- Application flexibility for on-going changes and creation of new surveys by the client. Contact: NetByTel, Inc., Boca Raton, Mary Hightower, 561-988-1995,

NetByTel Launches ``v-Government'' Initiative To Provide Government With Improved Constituent Service: Helping government agencies better serve constituents and minimize the "digital divide" is the driving force behind v-Government, or voice-access to electronic government services, a new solution initiative by NetByTel (Boca Raton, FL). The v-Government solution suite has been specifically designed for government agencies and can be deployed to provide a range of services from license and registration renewal to information inquiry, location finder or literature requests. Based on client requirements, NetByTel works in partnership with a number of industry-leading providers, including Speechworks (Nasdaq:SPWX). Examples of packaged and custom solutions for v-Government, powered by NetByTel, include: - Literature Request - provides timely fulfillment of government documents including forms, catalogs and information packages. Suitable for passport applications, National Park brochures, welfare standards, as well as other types of documents. - Location Finder - means no hold time for citizens and accurate, consistent information based on up-to-date US Postal information. Use this solution for Post Offices and military recruiting offices, welfare, WIC, clinic locations among others. - Citizen Survey - uses a web-based interface for creation and reporting that provides immediate feedback on in-bound telephone polls. To head this initiative, NetByTel has appointed Paul Karch as director of government affairs to. Karch comes to NetByTel with 19 years of experience in sales, marketing and technical delivery of leading edge IT solutions. He has conducted business in 50-plus countries through both direct and indirect VAR/OEM channels. Contact: NetByTel, Inc., Boca Raton, Mary Hightower, 561-988-1995,

Plum Group Announces VoiceXML IVR with Outbound Call Control Module:The Plum Group, provider of custom voice solutions, announced the inclusion of automated outbound calling capabilities on the Plum VoiceXML interactive voice response (IVR) platform. Plum offers an open standards solution to those enterprises that need to run sophisticated outbound calling campaigns. The Plum outbound call control module provides a web-based user interface for call campaign management. Calls are scheduled by the Plum Voice Portal engine and are scripted using VoiceXML. These calls can include dynamic messages with data drawn from enterprise databases, text-to-speech (TTS) generated audio, interaction with the user via touch-tone or automatic speech recognition (ASR), and transfer to operator call centers. Contact: Jennifer Johnson, The Plum Group, 800-995-PLUM, Matt Ervin, CEO

Unisys Launches Highly Scalable and Global Voice Portal Solutions: Unisys Corporation (NYSE:UIS) unveiled Unisys Voice Portal Solutions at SUPERCOMM 2002. Unisys Voice Portal Solutions will provide the ability to more easily navigate voicemail through the use of their voice and simpler access to Web content where PC portal information is not available. The solutions will also help to maximize a carrier's average revenue per user (ARPU) through subscriptions, transactions and increased voice usage. Unisys Voice Portal Solutions - which include Voice Controlled Messaging, Voice Web, and Voice Activated Dialing (VAD) will continue to work as 3G networks and handsets are deployed in the future. Unisys Voice Portal Solutions provide a central point of access to a set of content and services which are accessible through voice commands and delivered via audio recordings, text-to-speech, alarms or music. Voice Activated Dialing is the voice navigation of a user directory. This makes it possible to dial common numbers without a keypad and increases usage due to the ability to use the phone in more daily situations. Voice Controlled Messaging allows users to navigate through messages using the voice versus the keypad. Voice Web provides access to Web data without a computer using VoiceXML, a standards-based voice browser infrastructure. Unisys Voice Portal Solutions' will work on any handset -- alleviating the dependency on handset sales to fuel demand. The device-independence of the solutions makes it a lower risk alternative for growing ARPU. It also lets carriers apply this technology for many types of data, such as news, stocks and weather information. Additionally, the solutions can voice-enable legacy data applications and provide people with rapid access to sales figures and logistics. Telenor, a leading distributor of voice, information, knowledge and entertainment through communications services in Norway, has implemented Unisys speech technology for their voice-activated automatic attendant solution. The automated solution, which replaces call transfer via a manual switchboard, typically cuts clients' operating costs in half. Unisys has more than 100 communications service provider customers (including 9 of the 10 world's largest) in 40 countries, has deployed more than 100 million voice/fax messaging mailboxes worldwide and supports billions of messaging transactions per year. Contact: Unisys, Blue Bell, Gail Ferrari, 215/986-4321, Larry Srader, vice president of Strategy and Marketing at Unisys, Trond Haaberget, director, Business Development for VIPcom, a division of Telenor Business Solutions.

VoiceGenie and Audium Launch AudiumGenie, the Next Generation IVR Platform: VoiceGenie (Toronto, Canada) and Audium (New York) announce AudiumGenie, a voice-driven platform for IVR applications. AudiumGenie combines VoiceGenie's VoiceXML Gateway software with Audium 2, Audium's voice application server, to give businesses a way to build and run open IVR systems that integrate with their existing enterprise infrastructure while delivering a personalized experience to every caller. AudiumGenie integrates pre-built voice application modules with built-in support for Nuance speech recognition, making it easy to create and deploy voice-driven applications. AudiumGenie is shipping today, with promotional pricing for a 1U system with capacity to upgrade from 4 to 46 ports. ( Tom Stephenson, Audium Corporation, 877-AUDIUM1 x. 40, said J. Cory Wright, Audium's chief operating officer, Lorraine Neal, VoiceGenie Technologies Inc. 416.736.6105,

Telephone - IVR Partnerships/Financial

Aspect Communications using SpeechWorks' Speechify: Aspect (Nasdaq: ASPT)(San Jose, CA) Customer Self-Service (CSS) software supports SpeechWorks'(Nasdaq: SPWX)(Boston, MA) multilingual Speechify TTS engine. The solution will accommodate the real-time conversion of text into extremely high-quality speech in a variety of languages. Companies offering customers self-service options, such as interactive voice response, can relay text-based information to them from databases and Web sites via automated, natural-sounding speech, which enhances the service experience. Companies can also significantly reduce the cost and development time and effort associated with recording spoken responses for use in self-service applications. Aspect CSS software already supports SpeechWorks speech recognition technology. Aspect and SpeechWorks recently strengthened their relationship with the signing of a new, Aspect gold-level technology alliance and marketing cooperation agreement. The companies already have several joint customers including the Internal Revenue Service and Xerox. 617-428-4444 877-621-3692 Contact: Jennifer Stroud, 615-221-6842, Brooke Wagner, 978-244-7484,, both of Aspect Communications; or Leah Lesser,

Integro Networks, part of the INTEGRO Group, and provider of enterprise communication solutions, has chosen Elan's TTS for its Voice Communication Portal solution: The Voice Communication Portal (VCP) is built on a basic environment, with a reliable and scalable IVR system (ELIX's IVS) and specific unified communication applications that answer the Enterprise market's demands. It provides a unified access to major communication applications (Exchange, Lotus Domino, "Open" message services), to directories or meta-directories, and it perfectly integrates existing systems. With Elan's text-to-speech, combined with voice recognition, Integro Networks offers a complete vocal interface. The users can listen to their e-mails, and the contents of folders such as "tasks", "appointments" and "contacts". They can also be welcomed with their own name, when it is found in the meta-directory, and the sentences or commands recognised by the voice recognition engine can be read by the TTS for user validation. Integro Networks' VCP is already available in french, english and spanish. . Ccontact: Elan Speech, Caroline HouŽl - +33 (0)5 61 36 89 14 –

Partnership Between Loquendo and VoxPilot: Loquendo and Voxpilot have together formed a partnership in the field of VSP services. The aim of the agreement is to consolidate both companies' presence on the international market - especially in Europe - by delivering the cost-savings, increased revenue and efficiency benefits of speech technology to carriers and enterprises. Voxpilot will integrate Loquendo's lifelike TTS (Text-to-Speech) to support its customers in providing users voice applications in a vast array of languages. Loquendo's proprietary technologies (TTS, ASR, Speech Server, Speaker Verification) and platforms includes 21 voices in 13 languages with more to come, including Asian languages. Loquendo is a Telecom Italia Group company headquartered in Turin, Italy and its activities span from Europe to the U.S. and Latin America. Loquendo technology powers over 1,000,000 calls daily. Gaea Vilage, Marketing, Loquendo, Gaea.Vilage@LOQUENDO.COM

Metaphor Technology Natural Dialogs in Computer Telephony Interfaces -- Marketing Partnership with VoiceGenie: Metaphor Technology, Inc.(Wellesley, MA) a provider of full-service computer speech solutions, has introduced its Metaphor product and service, which they claim provides the most flexible and most natural automated dialogs in the industry. Using patented natural language technology, Metaphor develops dialogs that mimic real conversations by allowing users to interrupt or re-orient scripts at any time, with any relevant question or statement. Metaphor accommodates users who change their minds in the middle of a script. A joint marketing partnership was also announced with VoiceGenie Technologies Inc.(Toronto, Canada) . Although Metaphor generates industry standard VoiceXML and SALT code, the developer never writes code in these languages. Instead, Metaphor uses a powerful new development environment with embedded handling of dialog context and knowledge inference. As a result, Metaphor claims that dialogs are developed at a fraction of the time and expense it takes using standard dialog development tools using VoiceXML. Metaphor Technology, Inc. claims to provide the most natural and flexible dialog solutions for computer speech applications in the industry. The Company was founded by Dr. Michael Kuperstein in 2001 with the goal of making computers communicate better with people, based on how the brain processes and learns language patterns and sequences. Dr. Kuperstein, who got his Ph.D. at MIT, was voted one of the most influential e-commerce leaders in New England in 2001 by the Massachusetts Electronic Commerce Association. Contact: Metaphor Technology, Inc., Michael Kuperstein, 781-239-0137, or VoiceGenie Technologies Inc., Lorraine Neal, 416-736-6105,

Necsy selects PIKA Technologies' voice cards for advanced multimedia contact center: Necsy S.p.A (Rome, Italy), a pioneer in the Italian call center market, has selected PIKA Technologies'(Ottawa) MM-series analogue and digital E1 ISDN voice cards to enable voice services in Phoenix, an all-in-one server that integrates classical and next-generation communications media in a single scalable system. Phoenix is based on more than 20 years of experience providing sophisticated help desk and customer care solutions to telecom operators and public utilities throughout Europe. The system is Microsoft Windows-based and integrates traditional means of communications media (phone, fax) and advanced media (Internet, email, IP telephony) into a single environment. Phoenix's scalable architecture makes it suitable for contact centers of any size, and the all-in-one server can easily integrate within an enterprise's existing IT infrastructure. Phoenix uses PIKA Daytona MM-series station interface cards and PIKA PrimeNet MM cards to connect to handsets and the European ISDN network. Both the Daytona MM and PrimeNet MM cards have a PCI bus, are H.100 compliant, and have switching and DSP capacity for every channel. Necsy was one of the first Italian companies to design and deploy a carrier grade, all-in-one call center, based on the concept of the CT server. Founded in 1975, the company is experienced in the telecommunications sector and has successfully implemented many high-tech projects. Contact: Irene Crosby, Head of Marketing, PIKA Technologies Inc., 613-591-1555 x388, Maarten Kronenburg, Commercial Manager EMEA, PIKA Technologies Europe BV, +31 (0)76 5083 560, Massimo Cesaro, Director of Engineering, Necsy Call Center Solutions, +39 (0)49 8291 892

Prospectus Group Partners with VoiceTarget to Create Voice Portal: Prospectus Group Inc.(Vancouver, BC) has entered into an agreement to provide content to a voice portal being developed by VoiceTarget, Inc. (Houston, TX). VoiceTarget is collaborating with Nortel Networks to finalize work on the 713HOUSTON Voice Portal. The product is moving out of development and beta testing to public launch. Prospectus' wholly owned subsidiary, HyperNet Inc., will be contracted on a fee plus revenue sharing basis to provide VoiceTarget with content such as stock market quotations, weather, traffic, and movie information. VoiceTarget plans to open local market Voice Portals in the top 80 US markets. Additionally, VoiceTarget provides vertical market voice applications for a variety of industries ranging from Healthcare to Call Centers to Community Portals. VoiceTarget, Inc. owns and operates the 713HOUSTON Voice Portal. 713HOUSTON has been providing Interactive Voice Response Technologies since 1986. To hear a demo of stock quotes provided by HyperNet and VoiceTarget, call +1 713HOUSTON and simply speak the Keyword Stocks. Through its proprietary software, nTelligence, Prospectus produces custom applications for business-to-business e-commerce. nTelligence is middleware designed to accept, validate, manipulate, and organize large custom stores of mission critical business information coupled with a delivery component that distributes "real-time" information to any web, wireless, or voice device. Contact: 713-625-4000 x1001 Jim Wiseheart, President, VoiceTarget, Inc., 613-232-1588 x.209 Marvin Bedward, President & CEO, Prospectus Group Inc.,

Sirsi Selects ScanSoft RealSpeak to Service Libraries Worldwide: Sirsi(Huntsville, AL) has licensed ScanSoft (Nasdaq: SSFT)(Peabody, MA) RealSpeak to integrate synthesized speech into its Sirsi Voice Automation (SVA) telephone notification system, an application used by public libraries worldwide. SVA is a module of Sirsi's UnicornOasis Library Management System, a fully integrated, management system for public libraries of all sizes. The SVA telephone notification system is a convenient, automatic way for users to utilize a wide range of library services 24 hours a day, such as renewal of library materials and checking the status of books on hold. Libraries are also able to contact users automatically to deliver phone-based reminders regarding books on hold, overdue items and upcoming library events. Users also have the option of selecting a PIN to keep personal information secure. SVA uses the ScanSoft RealSpeak text-to-speech product as its "voice" for conveying information through inbound and outbound applications. For outbound applications, such as automatically calling library cardholders to remind them of overdue books, RealSpeak can convey the request with appropriate emphasis. RealSpeak offers a single, standardized application programming interface (API) that enables the deployment of speech-enabled applications in 19 languages: US and UK English, German, French, Dutch & Belgian Dutch, Castilian and Mexican Spanish, Italian, European and Brazilian Portuguese, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish, Danish and Cantonese & Mandarin Chinese, Korean and Japanese. UnicornOasis provides an online community gathering place for modern information seekers through the iBistro Electronic Library, which provides library users with convenient, powerful access to library-caliber content via the Internet, and the easy-to-use WorkFlows client, which provides library staff with a single graphical client to manage all areas of library operations. A partner with leading libraries around the globe since 1979, Sirsi provides software and services that assist libraries in breaking down walls, thereby promoting learning, empowerment, and opportunity for diverse user communities. Sirsi's portfolio of products and services includes the iBistro and iLink e-Library solutions, the Unicorn Library Management System, the Hyperion Digital Media Archive, a solution especially for libraries' digital collections; and a full slate of consulting, networking, training, and support services. Contact: ScanSoft, Inc., Jane Van Saun, 978-977-2114, or Sirsi Corporation, Vicki Smith, 256-704-7000,

ScanSoft's RealSpeak Text-to-Speech Engine to be Integrated into InfoSpace's TTS Server: ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT)(Peabody, MA) announced an agreement to integrate ScanSoft RealSpeak text-to-speech (TTS) engine into InfoSpace Inc.'s (Nasdaq: INSP) TTS server. ScanSoft's RealSpeak provides InfoSpace, a provider of wireless and Internet software and application services, further flexibility in its strategy of offering an "open" environment for deploying multimodal speech applications. Contact: ScanSoft, Inc.. Jane Van Saun, 978-977-2114, InfoSpace, Inc., Adam Whinston, 425-201-8946, Jan Claesson, InfoSpace executive vice president, wireless,

Suit Vs. 'Millionaire' Reinstated: A federal appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit alleging that ABC discriminates against disabled people trying to become contestants on ``Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.'' The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals (Miami, FL) decided that the lawsuit contained a valid claim that the show's qualifying system, which uses touch-tone phones, violates the Americans with Disabilities Act. A three-judge panel likened the phone system to other ``places of public accommodation'' covered under the law. District Judge Federico Moreno in Miami had concluded in 2000 that the ADA isn't broad enough to cover the show's telephone qualifying process. The panel ordered Tuesday that he review the decision. The show, which stars host Regis Philbin, is not on ABC's fall schedule, but is expected to return in special events, probably running several nights in a row. A syndicated version starring Meredith Vieira is scheduled to debut in September. Miami's Center for Independent Living filed the suit two years ago, saying the show's qualification system excludes hearing-impaired people and those who can't operate touch-tone phones. Contestants initially qualify by calling a toll-free number and correctly answering five questions using their phone's touch-tone pad. The show's Web site says 100,000 people call every day the phone lines are open, with 4 percent correctly answering the questions. Disability rights advocates say the network should use live operators or a different system to help the hearing-impaired. The show does not use speech recognition software, which would allow computers to understand the callers' spoken responses. The show also selects contestants with auditions featuring a written test offered in major cities and at colleges. Under the ADA, people can sue for better access and legal fees but no money for compensation or damages.

Telephone SPE Messaging – Applications/Products/Partnerships/Financial

Appiant Technologies Announces Recent Corporate Restructuring Efforts to Enhance Financial Performance: Appiant Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq:APPS)(Pleasanton, CA), a unified communications services supplier, has just completed a company-wide restructuring that Appiant claims has created the opportunity for the Company to achieve positive cash-flow more rapidly. This restructuring initiative provided for Intermedia Technologies, Inc. (Reno, NV) to acquire certain assets of VoicePlus, a legacy division of Appiant providing support and maintenance to installed voicemail systems. In exchange for registered trademarks, use of the VoicePlus' customer list and certain assets, the terms and conditions of the asset purchase provide for Appiant to be relieved of certain debts and obligations and for five Appiant employees to be outplaced and available for hire by Intermedia. In addition, Appiant has reassigned certain job responsibilities and subsequently released 10 U.S.-based employees. Collectively, this initiative has positioned Appiant to reduce its monthly expenses associated with salaries, benefits and affiliated costs by approximately $150,000, representing a significant reduction in monthly overhead. Moreover, this cost-reduction positions the Company to require less than 30,000 inUnison subscribers to reach cash-flow breakeven. Previously, Appiant reported that it would need 40,000 subscribers to achieve comparable results. Contact: Appiant Technologies, Inc., Pleasanton, Elite Financial Communications Group (West Coast), Jennifer Pelczarski, 480-281-1493,

Appiant Technologies Enters ASP Evaluation Agreement With Openwave: Appiant Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq:APPS), a supplier of unified communications solutions has entered into an agreement with Openwave Systems Inc., whereby Appiant is currently trialing the Openwave Unified Messaging platform for deployment within future inUnison product releases. Upon completion of a successful trial, Appiant intends to become a value-added ASP reseller of Openwave Unified Messaging Services giving Appiant access to a new customer base and joint marketing opportunities with Openwave. A successful service trial may lead to a bilateral relationship, whereby Openwave will add an additional ASP reseller for its unified messaging products, targeted at smaller Telcos, while Appiant garners a world-class partner that offers both best-of-breed technology and connections to a large number of leading wireless carriers on a global basis. This unified messaging offering enables smaller carriers, who prefer to outsource advanced applications, to maximize the benefits of offering unified messaging services while minimizing the upfront costs. Contact: Appiant Technologies, Inc., Pleasanton, Priya Mistry, 925-251-3317,

Comverse Unveils ImPact - A Comprehensive Value Added Service (VAS) Solution Designed To Increase Wireless Carrier ARPU: Comverse, a unit of Comverse Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: CMVT), has launched its new ImPact solution, a value-added services (VAS) solution designed to address operators' needs for increased average revenue per user (ARPU). ImPact helps operators expand and extend their revenue-generating services and increase average revenue per user by providing a crafted suite of entertaining and useful voice and data services. One service naturally leads to another, providing network subscribers with an improved user experience. ImPact seeks to stimulate revenue generation from every call opportunity while leveraging existing operator equipment, allowing operators to experience a rapid and healthy return on investment (ROI). ImPact's array of services includes enhanced messaging and notification capabilities, music-based entertainment applications, and a voice-controlled user interface to make service usage intuitive, inviting and hands-free. ImPact notification enhancements capture and report every incoming call, even when the phone is turned off, out of range, or a caller hangs up without leaving a message. All users can receive notification regarding their missed or lost calls, encouraging more returned calls on the operator's network. ImPact further enhances notifications by converting these valuable missed call reports into a new SMS communications vehicle. Operators can use the available space at the end of the missed call notification to provide a variety of content to their subscribers. Comverse claims that by integrating a strategic selection of voice, data and entertainment services, ImPact can bring a new level of quality to the user experience - and can help attract and retain customers. For example, an ImPact user returning to service can immediately receive an SMS notification showing that two voicemail messages were left while the handset was unavailable. Another SMS might indicate that a caller had hung up before leaving a message. At the end of the SMS message, the user could receive an option to download a newly available ringtone or be advised of a new operator service that enables the sending of music tracks to friends and family. The user can begin to navigate through the voicemail messages using simple voice commands and can easily choose to initiate a return call when appropriate. When the call is complete the user returns to the place where the voicemail session left off. Recognizing the caller who did not leave a message, the user may decide to reply by sending a song, returning the phone call or both. Contact: Investor/Business Press: Paul D. Baker, Comverse Technology, Inc., Penny Blaisdell, 781 224-8612

Glenayre Technologies Adds ScanSoft RealSpeak to Versera Voice Services Suite: Glenayre (Nasdaq: GEMS)(Atlanta, GA) now offers ScanSoft (Nasdaq: SSFT)(Peabody, MA) RealSpeak as one of the synthesized speech solutions in its VerseraVoice Services Suite. Glenayre's Versera Voice Services Suite consists of voice-controlled telephony services that enable service providers around the globe to introduce new revenue opportunities, increase subscriber satisfaction and reduce churn. ScanSoft RealSpeak integrates with the Versera Voice Services Suite to deliver text-based information to wireless and mobile devices using synthesized human-sounding speech. Glenayre partners with best-in-breed speech technology partners like ScanSoft to allow service providers to choose the solution that works best for them. ScanSoft RealSpeak text-to-speech (TTS) supports 19 languages through a single application programming interface, and when combined with Glenayre's Versera Voice Services Suite, enables the distribution of a wide range of text content, including e-mail, stock quotes, news and weather, electronic documents and Web site information. Contact: ScanSoft, Inc., Jane Van Saun, 978-977-2114, or Glenayre Technologies, Inc., Elizabeth Dolcourt, 770-283-2569,

NMS Communications, Nekotec, and NETCOM Enable Voice-Activated Dialing for Mexico's Leading Wireless Operator, Pegaso PCS: Through its strategic partnership with Latin American systems integrator Nekotec Electronics, NMS Communications (NASDAQ: NMSS)(Framingham, MA) was selected by Latin American speech recognition solutions provider NETCOM to provide the voice processing platform for Pegaso PCS' voice-activated dialing (VAD) system, Sistema de Voz Pegaso. The VAD system eliminates the need to dial phone numbers and allows any one of Pegaso PCS customers to simply speak the name or phone number of the person they want to call while Sistema de Voz Pegaso automatically completes the connection. As Mexico's leading wireless carrier, Pegaso has installed in Mexico a nationwide network of digital PCS services that set new quality and excellence standards for communication services. After only three years in the wireless market, Pegaso has secured over 1,000,000 users. NMS' voice processing and Signaling System 7 (SS7) platforms coupled with Nekotec Electronics' superior integration services have enabled NETCOM to provide Pegaso PCS with its flagship Parlanta speech recognition platform. Nekotec has been NMS' System Integration partner in Latin America. NETCOM created two personas - or voice personalities - for Sistema de Voz Pegaso; a formal female voice targeted at corporate users, and a more informal, friendly female persona targeted at general customers. Nekotec is a telecom system integrator based in Houston and Mexico City with operations in Latin America. Nekotec offers both hardware and software integration services with expertise in SS7 and VoIP. Nekotec's extensive support capabilities are utilized by the largest carriers, solution providers and equipment manufacturers in the region. Nekotec has several strategic alliances including NMS Communications and NETCOM. 877-NEKOTEC. NETCOM provides telephone information systems based on state-of-the-art speech recognition technology. By designing, implementing, and delivering carrier grade, dependable solutions, NETCOM products power the telecom networks creating a new information gateway for customers with next generation technology. NETCOM's flagship voice platform, Parlanta, provides a suite of technology solutions from voice-activated dialing, voice-activated e-mail, and virtual assistant to flight information, voice commerce and personal information or call 1-866-7-NETCOM. Pegaso PCS is a Mexican telecommunications company with a planned initial investment greater than $1.8 billion. Pegaso is deploying the first 100 percent digital network in Mexico offering state of the art technology in voice and data services to more than 1,000,000 users. Pegaso has launched PCS service in Mexico, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Tijuana, Ensenada, Reynosa, Nuevo Laredo Toluca, Cuernavaca, Mexicalli, Saltillo, and Chapala. Having acquired the necessary licenses to offer mobile and wireless local loop services. Contact: NMS Communications, Anne Nason, 508-271-1444, or NETCOM Voice Technologies, Maria A. Orjuela, 954-423-0030, or Pegaso PCS, Rosa Maria Alanis, 52 55 58 06 8737, or CHEN PR, Inc., Alyson Goodrow, 781-466-8282 x42, or Nekotec Electronics, Emilio Gandarilla, 52 55 50 51 1452, Ranieri Mestroni, President of NETCOM, Manuel Rojas, CEO of Nekotec

MATERNA To Deliver Group Calling Services From Octave Communications to European Carriers and Providers: MATERNA GmbH Information & Communications (Dortmund, Germany), a provider of mobile added value services, and Octave Communications (Nashua, NH) announced an agreement by which MATERNA will offer hosted services across Europe based on Octave's instant group communications products. MATERNA will launch the service based on the Octave Improv product under their Anny Way brand name. MATERNA's move into audio conferencing augments their messaging, entertainment, information and gateway services. They operate a sophisticated technical infrastructure for delivering services to network operators and service providers that can be purchased or used via a hosted environment. MATERNA currently distributes 250 million SMS messages each month. Its customers include network operators such as the Vodafone Group, mobilkom austria, E-Plus, VIAG Interkom, Quam, Debitel and Mobistar. The operator or provider can either purchase the Wireless Application Server or MATERNA can operate the server for the customer. Under the Anny Way brand, users select different applications for download, then store these applications in his or her device and execute them on demand. For example, an application for receiving personalized stock market report at a specific time on a mobile terminal is downloaded from the Wireless Application Server by the user. Now MATERNA will add group calling as an additional service that a service provider can choose. Instant Group Conversation is a quick and easy way for callers to get in touch with a group of people all at once, by dialing one number. Callers can create a buddy list of people, then use that list to connect members of that list to join an instant group call. Using any phone, the caller can dial one number to immediately reach all the members on their buddy list. The caller may also use DTMF or voice commands to select people on the list. Octave Improv instantly dials out to the selected group or individuals and everyone can chat together on one call. Callers can also notify a group of people for a call in the future by sending an automatic message with the date and time of call. The message can be sent via e-mail, IM, SMS or voice mail. The message will be delivered to PCs, cell phones, landline phones, PDAs or pagers, whichever device each person prefers. The MATERNA group is a leading software distributor specialising in information and communications technology. The company currently employs over 1,400 members of staff worldwide and achieved 2001 revenue of 181 million Euro ($171 million USD). The company has branch offices throughout the whole of Germany as well as in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Hungary, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Poland, Thailand and United Kingdom. MATERNA's Business Unit Information creates e-business solutions for electronic trading on the Internet. The Internet strategy "e3-solutions" comprises services in the fields of e-business, e-customer relationship management and e-management. The Business Unit Communications offers products and solutions in the areas of mobile solutions and unified messaging. These primarily include mobile value added services based on WAP and SMS, which are marketed under the brand name Anny Way. 603.459.5200. Contact: Octave Communications, Nancy Pieretti, 603-459-5436, or MATERNA, Antje Zimmer, +49 231 55 99 531,

Preferred Voice Inc Launches New Peripheral for the Telco Market: Preferred Voice has introduced SAM (service access module), a proprietary, patent-pending remote intelligent peripheral that allows the creation of speech-driven subscriber services using legacy, switch-based feature sets. The SAM allows ISUP T1 connections from the Telco switch and is the first "Speech Empowered Intelligence Peripheral" for the Telco's AIN (advanced intelligent network) switch feature sets, developed to Telcordia Standards GR-1129, GR-1298 and GR-1299. As well as furnishing the RLT (release link technology) and caller ID for all speech service sets. Contact: Bill Schereck, President - CEO of Preferred Voice, Inc., 214-265-9580 ,

Preferred Voice and PSC Wireless Set to Launch the Preferred Voice Platform on August 1: Preferred Voice, Inc. said that PSC Wireless (Columbus, GA), a privately held wireless carrier has agreed to offer Voice Dial and Safety Talk services to all of its subscribers beginning August 1, 2002. The company said the PSC deployment would begin producing substantial new revenues for Preferred Voice beginning in the month of September 2002. Voice Dialing allows a subscriber to access a "Personal Dialing Directory" via a speed access code such as ** or #0. After gaining access to the directory, the subscriber can speak the name or the phone number they want to call. Preferred Voice will be utilizing its private SS7 VoIP network to deliver speech driven services to PSC Wireless. This network-based approach offers important advantages for both wireline and wireless customers. The PSC market launch is one of a series of scheduled deployments Preferred Voice has completed this year as part of an expansion plan. The company is installing and launching services with carrier partners on a weekly basis over the next two months. PSC Wireless is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Public Service Communications, a privately-owned corporation providing conventional and wireless telephone, internet, cable television and long distance services to Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina. As the first provider of cellular telephone services to Columbus, Georgia, PSC Wireless began operations as Public Service Cellular in September 1987 with only one tower and one sales associate. Today, PSC Wireless serves a 10,000+ square mile active service area in Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina. PSC Wireless provides customer service, wireless phone sales, professional installation and service through more than 100 retail outlets. . Contact: Bill Schereck, President - CEO of Preferred Voice, Inc., 214-265-9580 , Kelly Bond, General Manager for PSC Wireless

Preferred Voice to Delay New Fundraising Plans & Achieve Positive Cash Flow By Reducing Expenditures: Preferred Voice, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: PFVI)(Dallas, TX) has come to the conclusion that raising additional capital at current market prices would unnecessarily dilute shareholders. The company has taken a number of steps to reduce expenditures, including a temporary reduction of full time employees from 31 to 19, and a reduction in salaries for all employees, including management by 15 percent. Contact: Bill Schereck, President-COO of Preferred Voice, Inc.,214-265-9580; or Ira Weingarten of Equity Communications, 805-897-1880.

Strategic Alliance between Telephonetics and Vodat Solutions Delivers Voice Activated Dialling Across an IP Network: Speech technology specialist Telephonetics(Hemel Hempstead, UK) has formed a strategic alliance with Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) supplier Vodat Solutions to deliver speech recognition voice activated dialling across an IP network. The new VoIP ASP service is based on Telephonetics’ ContactPortal system, which uses speech recognition technology to answer, transfer and make telephone calls. It also allows staff to filter out calls from people they’d rather not speak to and forwards calls to employees wherever they’re working. Wholly owned and funded by the founders, Telephonetics currently controls approximately 75% of the UK multiplex cinema IVR market. It also provides bespoke developments, generic products and managed services for other industries, and has a blue chip client base that includes BT Cellnet and Avaya. Its solutions use best of breed open-systems technology from Aculab, Intel, Philips Speech Processing and Nuance. Vodat was established as a specialist IP provider back in 1999. Vodat partners with major communications providers such as Fibernet and leading IP software suppliers across Europe to offer highly cost-effective IP services that are affordable to small-to-medium sized companies. The Vodat Managed Solution is targeted at smaller companies who really stand to benefit from its affordability, and has been proven to deliver tangible business benefit to our customers, including the AcNet Partnership accountants group, Timberwise and the construction group Willmott-Dixon. Contact: Paul Welham, Sales & Marketing Director, Telephonetics, +44 (0)1442 242 242, PaulW@TELEPHONETICS.CO.UK Alex Waterman, Managing Director, Vodat Solutions, + 44 (0) 870 330 0850 Tracey Williams, PR Consultant: +44 (0) 1225 723237,

Voyant Technologies Introduces MobileMeeting for Wireless Carriers: Voyant Technologies (Westminster, CO), a provider of collaborative voice solutions, unveils its wireless group communications solution: MobileMeeting enables mobile users to easily and instantly communicate with groups of friends, family or business colleagues. To confirm the demand for wireless conferencing and collaboration, Voyant conducted extensive primary focus group research. The market study showed that end users are looking for ways to help them stay connected in today's fast-paced world; they want solutions that help them do more but are technologically simple. MobileMeeting is designed to meet these consumer needs while meeting the carriers' demand for enhanced services that supply additional revenue, reduce churn and help differentiate the service provider from its competition. MobileMeeting incorporates cutting edge technology solutions that take group collaboration to the next level, including: -- Speech recognition -- Uses conversational speech to invite and join participants to a conference. -- Express MeetMe conferencing entry -- Now conference hosts and participants can instantly join in a conference with minimal keystrokes and no IVR prompts. -- Mobile Internet (WAP) -- A WAP interface allows a mobile user to simultaneously dial out to multiple participants by simply selecting individuals and groups from a contact list on the handset. -- Web Portal -- The portal makes it simple to manage an address book, create and edit groups, dial participants and control the conference call from your PC. -- Notifications -- Conference notifications can be sent to participants via e-mail and/or short messaging (SMS) on the mobile phone allowing simple one-click entry into the conference. -- Personalized Greetings -- The conference initiator can record a personalized message to greet participants with a familiar voice. At the heart of MobileMeeting is Voyant's on demand conferencing technology. The solution has flexibility to allow easy integration with other value-added services and applications such as IM, presence and voice portals. It also comes with a rich set of APIs, enabling application developers to provide customized, differentiated services to customers. With mobile usage rapidly growing, the need for a "hands-free" option is essential. To this end, Voyant has partnered with Nuance to create a fully VoiceXML compliant speech recognition interface for MobileMeeting. This feature simplifies the initiation of group collaboration by adding participants through the use of intuitive conversational voice. Voyant Technologies designs voice collaboration solutions for switched, wireless and IP networks. The company allows domestic and international carriers, LECs, CASPs, and next-generation carriers to integrate high-quality voice into every real-time communications application, such as web conferencing, e-learning and other mission-critical business and wireless applications. With over 220 customers worldwide, Voyant makes it easier for customers to integrate, operate and expand voice collaboration solutions to multiple endpoint devices. 888-447-1087. Voyant Europe Ltd. can be reached at +44 (0) 1483 549011. Contact: VisiTech PR for Voyant, Bob Monzel, 720-283-1303,

Telephone Enterprise Messaging – Application/Products/Partnerships

Active Voice Announces Newest Version of Repartee Unified Messaging System: Active Voice, LLC (Seattle, WA), a global provider of unified messaging, computer telephony, and voice messaging solutions, is accepting orders for its Repartee unified messaging system with enhanced Microsoft Windows applications (version 7.60) as of July 1, 2002. The latest version builds on Repartee's proven technology, and offers several new features, including Text-to-Speech for Microsoft Exchange, Mailbox Manager, and enhanced client-based unified messaging and call control applications. With mobility in mind, Repartee 7.60 offers text-to-speech for Microsoft Exchange 5.5 and 2000. This feature enables Repartee users to quickly access, listen, and respond to e-mail messages using the telephone. In addition, users can reply to, delete, or redirect an e-mail message to another subscriber's Microsoft Outlook Inbox. Text-to-speech functionality not only increases message accessibility from the road, but it also improves customer responsiveness by allowing users to manage their e-mail messages from almost any location. Repartee 7.60 also includes a Mailbox Manager application that brings voice mail capabilities to the desktop PC. The new Mailbox Manager graphical user interface (GUI) allows Repartee subscribers to configure personal mailbox settings via the computer, in addition to using the telephone user interface (TUI). With this new tool, Repartee users can modify greetings, message notification, playback options and security codes whether they are traveling or working from their desktop PC. Other product enhancements include updated client-based unified messaging and call control applications that support Windows XP operating system, optional time and date stamp before message, Message Waiting Indicator (MWI) for hotel guests' greeting message, and configuration for multiple security code attempts. Active Voice, LLC, a subsidiary of NEC America, Inc., is a global provider of unified messaging, computer telephony, and voice messaging solutions, powering the communications infrastructure of businesses worldwide. The Seattle-based company has offices in the United States, Australia and the Netherlands. Over 100,000 Active Voice systems have been installed in more than 60 countries. Active Voice's products are sold through a network of independent telecommunications manufacturers, dealers, computer resellers, and strategic partners. or contact Active Voice's Sales Support at 1-877-864-8948 or by e-mail at Contact: Amy Thomas, 206-441-4700, ext. 1197,

Adomo announces enhanced user and administrative features for its Mobile Communication Server Appliance: Adomo Inc.(Cupertino, CA), a provider of speech enabled server appliances for the mobile workforce announced the availability of its AdomoMCS 1.2 software upgrade. The 1.2 software upgrade gives mobile users additional functionality to improve their overall experience while providing Exchange administrators with more installation flexibility, security and remote monitoring capabilities. The AdomoMCS (Mobile Communication Server) is a server appliance that allows authorized users to access Microsoft Exchange 5.5 or 2000 information [email and calendar] using voice from any telephone. Users call the AdomoMCS, say their name, and are authenticated with a PIN (Personal Identification Number) code. They can then have their email read to them over the phone, respond to the email, or create new emails using speech commands. Users can also review calendar appointments, create new meetings and send out meeting requests to invitees. Professionals on the go now have the ability to easily access critical information anywhere and anytime. With Adomo's new 1.2 software upgrade, users can now "barge in," interrupting the system prompts at any time by simply saying a new command. The 1.2 software upgrade also gives users the option of spelling an email address using voice or the keypad in addition to accessing an email address from their MS Exchange address book. Users also have the option of hearing emails with attachments by document type and title. With the 1.2 software upgrade system administrators have even greater installation flexibility, giving them the ability to remotely monitor the system using SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol. Voicemail Integration - Working with Altigen and NBX PBX/voicemail systems, if the inbox contains voicemail from one of these systems and the user says, "read it," the Adomo MCS will play the voicemail immediately without going through the attachments menu. Contact: 408-996-7086, Jeff Snider, CEO of Adomo,

Atos Origin's multimedia branch has choosen Elan's text-to-speech to speech-enable their new unified messaging solution: This messaging service is a worktool for managing all kinds of message, written or vocal, from a single inbox, and sharing data, with access from any terminal. With SpeechCube, Elan's multilingual text-to-speech component for Enterprise and Telco applications, the users can access their e-mail from any telephone. The emails are read out loud, including proper names, numbers and currencies for optimal restitution of information. With its pre-processing module, Speech Cube also extracts information about the sender, the subject and the date of the e-mail. Atos Origin's multimedia unified messaging solution is multi-channel and scalable. Already in use in its french version, the messaging offer will soon be available in english. SFR, Orange, Alstom, Peugeot, Renault, La Poste, Tťlťroute and 01Net are some of the many clients who use Atos Origin's multimedia platform services. . Ccontact: Elan Speech, Caroline HouŽl - +33 (0)5 61 36 89 14 –

One Voice Announces MobileVoice Enterprise; One Voice Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq:ONEV)(San Diego, CA), developer of 4th Generation voice solutions for the wireless, Telematics, TV/Internet appliance and Interactive Multimedia markets has introduced MobileVoice Enterprise -- a communications and messaging solution designed for small to large corporate use. This scalable solution includes One Voice's voice technology for Voice-Activated Dialing, E-Mail, SMS, Instant Messaging and Paging. One Voice is currently forming distribution partnerships to accelerate penetration of their services in the Enterprise market. The MobileVoice Enterprise solution can be scaled from a single server solution capable of handling small companies to a multi-server solution for large geographically dispersed enterprises. The MobileVoice Enterprise solution integrates with existing corporate POP3 and Microsoft Exchange Server e-mail systems. This solution, which resides behind the corporate firewall, offers mobile access to business critical information while maintaining the highest levels of corporate security. Additionally, the MobileVoice Enterprise solution works with any mobile phone make or model and on all wireless carrier networks. Contact: One Voice, Tom Jackson, 212-825-3210, Nick Fuller, (44) 20 7256 5204,

University of Pennsylvania deploys Voice ReQuest Campus Edition from Philips Speech Processing: Philips Speech Processing (Dallas, TX), a business unit of Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG) and a global leader in speech recognition technology, announced that the University of Pennsylvania will deploy Voice ReQuest Campus Edition, Philips’ industry-leading speech-enabled call routing system for universities and campus-based organizations with 100,000 or more students, faculty members and employees. By allowing callers to reach the desired party simply by speaking their request, Voice ReQuest eliminates hold times and saves callers the hassle of remembering extensions or correct name spellings. While Penn’s initial roll out of Voice ReQuest Campus Edition will accommodate 50,000 student and faculty names, the system easily scales to support a virtually unlimited number of names and can also route calls to departments such as "Dean’s Office," "Engineering Department," "Admissions," etc. Penn State is initially deploying Voice ReQuest to help callers reach Penn students and faculty after hours, on weekends and holidays. Callers only need to know the name of the person they wish to reach, not the extension, which can be hard to remember or change over the course of a semester. Philips Speech Processing has more than 300 voice dialing systems installed nationwide. In addition to the University of Pennsylvania, a selection of U.S. universities deploying Philips’ Voice Request Campus Edition includes Kent State University, Pepperdine University, Stephens Institute of Technology, Loyola University and the University of California, Santa Barbara. Nydia LaPlante, Penn’s associate director of telecommunications. Tom Falk,

Baycare Health System Selects Phonetic Systems for Dynamic Voice Access to 35,000 Directory Listings Across Nine Hospitals: Florida-based BayCare Health System implemented the PhoneticOperator Global Enterprise Administration solution to voice-enable the 35,000 directory listings across nine hospitals. Phonetic Systems’ solution allows BayCare to cost effectively and easily connect any of its 16,000 resident and visiting employees, regardless of their location, by just speaking their name. Phonetic Systems’ solution is designed specifically for voice searching extremely large directories of five thousand to more than 5,000,000 records. Phonetic Systems’ solution also provides the management flexibility and seamless scalability needed to control dynamic and frequent updates due to staff turnover and location changes. These characteristics have also prompted BayCare to begin exploring the potential for Phonetic Systems’ solution to scale to manage other critical connectivity tasks. These future tasks could include emergency routing to cell phones and beepers, and the massive task of managing inbound patient communications while still maintaining the highest levels of confidentiality and privacy. Contact: Heather Howland, Phonetic Systems, 781-276-2170, Dan Duncan, regional project manager at BayCare Health System

Phonetic Systems Version 5.0 Voice Search Engine Improves Scalability and Performance in a Carrier Grade Solution: Phonetic Systems (Bedford, MA) announced a major upgrade to its core technology platform which forms the foundation for its PhoneticOperator and DirectoryAssistant products. Phonetic Systems is a leader in voice-enabling large and dynamic directories. The company currently supports 10,500,000 unique directory listings and over 225,000,000 calls per year across its live deployments. Version 5.0 of Phonetic Systems’ Voice Search Engine enables extensibility and performance in providing voice access to directory-based applications. These applications include automated carrier directory assistance, enterprise call routing, virtual credit card, conferencing, emergency broadcast messaging, paging and security systems; as well as call center applications such as secure voice access, password reset, business continuity coordination and information retrieval. Phonetic Systems’ PhoneticOperator platform sits on the network like a telephone set, but functions like a live operator, completing calls and providing information without requiring any additional IT resources. Phonetic Systems claims that customers report record-breaking paybacks of Phonetic Systems solutions in only six months. With Version 5.0 the core Phonetic Systems technology platform offers four major enhancements: - Scalability: Version 5.0 can search more than 5,500,000 directory listings and over 1,000,000 grammar sizes in a single server before needing to subdivide. Phonetic Systems claims that by keeping directories in a single server, customers gain dramatically increased accuracy and overall system success while they lower total cost of ownership by reducing the integration and administration. ∑ Carrier Grade Version 5.0 offers increased reliability, scalability and the robustness required for carrier deployments. DirectoryAssistant and PhoneticOperator move from a single platform implementation to a modular, distributed approach which sits like an ecosystem and automates the transfer of voice and data between the database, switch and workstation. Version 5.0 also delivers improved automated analysis and logging tools for ensuring superior levels of accuracy and supports VXML 2.0 and is SNMP compliant. ∑ PhoneticOperator and DirectoryAssistant provide increased accuracy in quickly identifying intended contacts and completing calls regardless of connection and environmental factors from analog, digital, wireless and/or VoIP interfaces. Version 5.0 also improves proactive data tuning and filtering to boost search performance. ∑ Open API Opening up the API to Version 5.0 allows third party vendors such as software and hardware platform providers to integrate with Phonetic Systems solutions. This provides greater ability to customize the product and achieve even greater levels of carrier grade redundancy and scalability. Contact: Heather Howland, Phonetic Systems, 781-276-2170,

PIKA Technologies' voice cards supported through JTAPI layer to enable voice services in disy Conference system: disy Informationssyteme GmbH, (Karlsruhe, Germany) a developer of integrated information and communications solutions, working with PIKA Technologies Inc. (Ottawa, Canada), announced the latest software version of disy Conference, a Web-directed conference system based on JTAPI. JTAPI is an object-oriented application programming interface (API) from Sun Microsystems, which allows Java-based programs to be telephony based. Advantages of JTAPI are portability, scalability, simplicity and expandability. JTAPI's independence from computer telephony interface (CTI) hardware allows disy to use existing hardware as conference bridges. JTAPI (Java Telephony API) is an open API, designed by Sun, Lucent, IBM, Nortel, Novell and Intel. It was developed with the goal of creating a uniform interface to unite the advantages of existing telephony interfaces. The core package supplies basic telephony functionalities. Extensions to the core package include call control, call center, media, mobile, phone and private packages. The core package must be present with each extension package, and all extension packages are optional. JTAPI differs from other telephony APIs in the fact that it can be implemented easily on the basis of other interfaces, e.g. TAPI, TSAPI or SunXTL. With first-party call control and third-party call control all CTI architectures are supported. JTAPI simplifies the development of telephony software without overlooking important functionalities and presupposing special operating systems or telephony hardware. disy Conference's Web Browser delivers planning, reservation, and control of audio conferences. The system was developed for the needs of the automated, user-controlled conferencing market. An additional operator is not needed. A personal directory, conference planners, and an intelligent conference management tool help to accomplish efficient conferencing every time. With features like on-line cost control and itemized billing, the customer always has an overview of the resultant conference service fees. Portability and scalability have improved from 30 to 1200+ conference ports through the use of JTAPI. To take full advantage of the open JTAPI interface, disy implemented JTAPI in their conference bridge disy Conference. The implementation covers the core package, and the call control and media extension packages. The core package has been implemented completely and contains simple telephony functions like incoming and outgoing calls. The call control package plays a central role for disy Conference as it includes the extended call functions such as conferences and call number transmission. The media package makes the recording of conferences, and DTMF signal detection and generation possible. PIKA boards are supported through the JTAPI layer to enable voice services. disy Conference will be able to support CTI systems from other vendors, such as Aculab, Intel Dialogic or Tenovis. Thus disy Conference can be offered now as a hardware-independent conference service for communication service providers, Internet portals and inter-enterprise deployment. The optimization of internal and external communication and cooperation of its clients is the centre of interest of the 1997 founded company, disy Informationssysteme GmbH. disyīs software solutions connect modern information and communication technology and can be integrated in organizational and inter-organizational business processes. Contact: Ralf Nikolai, Managing Director, disy Informationssysteme GmbH, +49-721-1 600-600, Irene Crosby, Head of Marketing, PIKA Technologies Inc., 613-591-1555 x388, Maarten Kronenburg, Commercial Manager EMEA, PIKA Technologies Europe BV, +31 (0)76 5083 560

Telephone Enterprise Messaging – Partnerships/Financial

iVoice and CYGCOM Sign North American Distribution Agreement: iVoice, Inc. (OTCBB: IVOC) and CYGCOM Integrated Technologies, Inc (Markham, Canada)., a North American distributor of convergence technology products targeting service oriented value added resellers, announced a distribution agreement whereby CYGCOM will promote and resell iVoice speech enabled communication solutions to its reseller channels throughout the United States and Canada. The distribution agreement provides a distribution channel for iVoice potentially reaching telephony resellers in Canada. In particular, CYGCOM is already a leading Canadian distributor of the Artisoft TeleVantage phone system for which iVoice has previously demonstrated and announced system compatibility. CYGCOM Integrated Technologies, Inc. is a value added computerized telephony distributor, located in greater Toronto. A top Intel Communications distributor, CYGCOM specializes in convergence telephony solutions running on UNIX, DOS, OS\2, Windows 95/98/2000 and Windows NT platforms. These computer telephony solutions can be configured on CYGCOM's UNYCOM communications servers or one of the leading OEM products. Contact: CYGCOM, 800-407-7928, . Jeff Valliant President of CYGCOM

iVoice System Compatibility with Comdial/Key Voice Technologies and Special - Promo Pricing: iVoice, Inc. (Matawan, NJ) announced successful interoperability, providing speech recognition capabilities with its Speech Enabled Auto Attendant to Key Voice Interchange voice mail system from Key Voice Technologies, a global provider of unified messaging and voice processing solutions. The iVoice Speech Enabled Auto Attendant allows businesses to incorporate speech recognition into their current communications systems without duplicating their current voicemail applications. Integration only requires the addition of a voice board that installs directly into the existing Key Voice system. To introduce the speech recognition capabilities iVoice's Speech Enabled Auto Attendant to Key Voice distributors, iVoice is offering a fully operational 4-port demo system that includes a 4-port Dialogic voice board. Key Voice distributors can call iVoice at 732-441-7700 and say "Key Voice Demo!" Contact: 732-441-7700 and say "Investor Relations", Dolores Serafin-Sloboda, iVoice, Inc., Jerry Mahoney, CEO, 732-441-7700,

Phonetic Systems Offers 'Voice Without Limits’;From now until December 31, 2002 Phonetic Systems' "Voice Without Limits" program invites companies that are dissatisfied with limited-scale, voice-enabled directory solutions to move up to its PhoneticOperator speech technology and receive a trade in credit with a minimum value of $25,000 (credit increases with size of implementation). "Voice Without Limits" also guarantees that a customer's application will be fully deployed and running successfully in 30 working days, and that the total cost of the implementation will be fixed. Customers of any speech-enabled directory vendor or customers that have had custom projects built using standard speech recognition tool kits are being invited to join the "Voice Without Limits" program. Directories must contain a minimum of 5,000 listings, and are unlimited in size beyond that number. Phonetic Systems will take all listings supplied by a customer and roll them into one undivided directory. The company claims that it currently has over 10,500,000 directory listings in production servicing over 225,000,000 calls per year. Contact: Phonetic Systems, Heather Howland, 781-276-2170,

VoiceGenie and Phonetic Systems Voice-Enable IVR With Caller Authentication -- Voice-driven call centers keep calls in automated call flow, dramatically increasing ROI: VoiceGenie Technologies and Phonetic Systems announced the integration of VoiceGenie's Gateway with Phonetic Systems' Phonetic Name Identifier. The call automation solution improves customer service and decreases costs by integrating voice-driven caller identification and authentication into existing IVR systems. Phonetic Name Identifier offers a natural, spoken name-based front- end solution that "bolts on" to any existing IVR. Callers simply say their names and passwords to identify themselves, then proceed through the automated IVR. By keeping callers in the IVR path, on-hold times are reduced, increasing customer satisfaction and reducing agent time, resulting in significant cost savings. Engineered within Phonetic Systems' Voice Search Engine open API in version 5.0 and combined with VoiceGenie's VoiceXML Gateway, the solution integrates with any IVR, VoiceXML or speech platform. Phonetic Name Identifier delivers the highest levels in scalability, robustness and reliability as well as provides fast and accurate access to large, dynamic information directories regardless of background noise, accents, mispronounced words or similar-sounding names. Contact: Lorraine Neal, Director, Marketing, VoiceGenie Technologies Inc., 416-736-6105, Heather Howland, Director, Marketing, Phonetic Systems, Inc., (781) 276-2170,

VoiceGenie and speechvantage Introduce Voice-Driven Auto Attendant Solution: VoiceGenie Technologies Inc.(Toronto, Canada) and speechvantage, Inc., a provider of full-service speech solutions, introduced their new GenieVantage Auto Attendant Gateway solution. The complete turnkey package combines speechvantage's VoiceXML-based Auto Attendant application with VoiceGenie's VoiceXML platform. The Auto Attendant facilitates the call completion process for inbound callers who do not know a particular extension or remote office phone number when calling an enterprise. Rather than waiting for a live operator or spelling a name on a telephone keypad, callers simply speak the name of the person or department they want to reach. The system includes a voice dialing capability that allows internal callers to place outbound calls by saying a name from a personal address book or company directory. The GenieVantage value package is available immediately and can be combined with a full range of complementary services including e-mail readback for Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Notes, financing, disaster recovery, and on- site service and maintenance plans. VoiceGenie and speechvantage are offering introductory pricing for a limited time: An entry-level configuration for 4 ports is US $37,500, and can be leased for less than US $1,000 per month. . . Contact: Lorraine Neal, Director, Marketing, VoiceGenie Technologies Inc., 416-736-6105, Jack Roken, EVP of Sales, speechvantage, Inc., 215-369-9900,

PIKA Technologies and iQ NetSolutions partner to deliver enterprise telephony call control: A technology partnership was announced by PIKA Technologies Inc. : (Ottawa, Canada), and iQ NetSolutions, Inc. (Westborough, MA), a developer of enterprise telephony call control systems. PIKA digital and analog interface voice cards will enable the voice services in iQ's VistaPoint Server call center systems. VistaPoint Server is a software product designed to provide a robust suite of PBX and call center applications for small- to mid-sized enterprises. VistaPoint's open architecture allows resellers to tailor the PBX/ACD system to meet the unique needs of their enterprise customers while delivering cost effective telephony applications. Off the shelf, VistaPoint Server comes fully loaded with call control, automated attendant, voice mail and instant messaging, as well as management tools like comprehensive monitoring and reporting. iQ's VistaPoint Integrated Communications Services (VPICS) architecture provides a path to next generation converged voice and data IP networks. Contact: Irene Crosby, Head of Marketing, PIKA Technologies Inc., 613-591-1555 x388, Jennifer Cardile, Marketing Specialist, iQ NetSolutions, Inc.,, 508-870-3228 x117, Tom Racca, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, iQ NetSolutions

VoiceGenie and Convergent Voice Partner to Deliver Voice-Enabled Multi-Channel Contact Center Solutions: VoiceGenie Technologies Inc.(Toronto, Canada) and Convergent Voice Inc.(Rochester, NY), a provider of voice automated solutions and contact center consulting services, announced a co-marketing and sales alliance. Convergent Voice's automated contact center solutions enable effective management of customer interactions through voice user interfaces. The customer experience is enhanced through the integration of multiple capabilities including advanced speech recognition, intelligent human agent integration, CRM database integration for personalized treatment and multi-modal device support for effective information dissemination. Coupled with the VoiceGenie Gateway, it provides a set of ready-to-use frameworks and automated agents. Planning, design and project management are essential components of Convergent Voice's delivery models on the VoiceGenie Voice Web platform. Contact: Lorraine Neal, Director, Marketing, VoiceGenie Technologies Inc., 416-736-6105, David Lanning, President, Convergent Voice Inc., 716-482-8060,

ACN Inc. and Verb Exchange enter into definitive sales and marketing agreement: ACN Inc.(Farmington Hills, MI), a major utilities customer acquisition company, announced a strategic sales and marketing agreement with Verb Exchange Inc.(Vancouver, BC), a supplier of Unified Communications, Advanced Messaging and Broadcasting solutions. Under the terms of the agreement, ACN will introduce Verb Exchange's tagline and myMessenger products to its North American base of independent representatives and will offer the products for sale to ACN's customers and distributors. Verb Exchange's tagline is a Unified Communications service that allows the user to access and initiate messages anywhere, anytime, via any device. tagline's text to speech and speech recognition capacities, give users complete control over their communications either by phone, web browser, or wireless PDA.. Freed from the constraints of time, place or device dependence, users can interact in real time with their crucial information and messages, in any environment. Verb Exchange's myMessenger is a Java-based broadcast messaging solution that integrates the user's PIM/CRM information to allow a single voice recorded message to be broadcast to 5, 500 or 50,000 contacts in real time. Each broadcast can be customized to allow for advanced polling and response capabilities, hot transfer to a contact center, etc. The Direct Selling Association estimates that in the year 2000 alone, over $25.5B in revenue was transacted through direct selling organizations. That number is expected to increase as the number of individuals joining these organizations continues to grow at approximately 10% per annum. Verb Exchange is a privately held corporation with U.S. offices in Phoenix, AZ. A privately held customer acquisition company, ACN Inc., operates in 10 countries throughout North America and Europe. Named one of the fastest growing companies in America, ACN Inc. is an emerging leader in the telecommunications and utility industries. Contact: Alexa Ulinder, Corporate Communications, tagline, 1-866-824-0002, Douglas Matthews, VP, Corporate Development at Jeff Swenson, Chief Operating Officer of ACN Inc.

Telephone Operator Services – Application/Products/Partnerships

NexVerse Networks Delivers New Enhanced Services for SoftSwitch-Based Networks Using the Tellme Voice Application Network: NexVerse Networks (San Jose, CA) announced the successful completion of interoperability testing between the ControlSwitch, NexVerse's open softswitch platform, and the Tellme Voice Application Network. Service providers can now offer enhanced voice-enabled services to their business and residential customers over a Voice-over-IP (VoIP) network. NexVerse has demonstrated how its ControlSwitch works with the Tellme Voice Application Network to provide innovative services, such as voice-enabled directory assistance, over a converged packet-based infrastructure. The Tellme Voice Application Network enables service providers and enterprise clients to quickly deploy voice-enabled applications without having to purchase or administer any expensive legacy Interactive Voice Recognition (IVR) infrastructure. Tellme Networks' Internet-powered, carrier-grade network based on the open VoiceXML standard, allows customers to reap the benefits and cost-savings of Web-model pricing for voice-enabled services. NexVerse's ControlSwitch platform interoperates with the Tellme Voice Application Network using the SIP protocol. This allows NexVerse's service provider customers to use the capabilities of Tellme Networks' platform to offer new revenue-generating services and enhance customer satisfaction. By leveraging the ControlSwitch's ability to interwork between multiple PSTN and packet protocols, such as MGCP, SIP, H.323, and H.248, service providers can use a common network-based infrastructure to deliver these services to subscribers served through any type of network. NexVerse's softswitch platform, ipVerse ControlSwitch, is a carrier-class application and call control platform that offers traditional toll, tandem and local (i.e. Class 4/ 5) voice services, as well as new, converged voice-data services. NexVerse Networks is privately funded by leading venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Norwest Venture Partners, Battery Ventures and Levensohn Capital Management. The company is headquartered in San Jose, CA, with field offices throughout the United States. www.tellme.comContact: Dharma Kuthanur of NexVerse Networks, Inc., 408-750-9458, R. Paul Singh, Vice President of Business Development, NexVerse Networks, . Contact: Megan Dyer of Tellme Networks, Inc., 650-930-9247, or

Telephone Tools-Products/Partnerships/Financial

Aculab and Pronexus announce partnership: Pronexus (Ottawa, Canada and Aculab (Milton Keyes, UK) announced a strategic alliance and joint marketing agreement. This strategic partnership culminates a joint research and development project between both companies. Developers will now be able to use Aculab’s Prosody digital signal processing (DSP) resource platform and the Pronexus VBVoice application generator together. VBVoice is a Windows-based Rapid Application Development (RAD) environment for building CT applications in Visual Basic. VBVoice allows corporate developers and integrators to rapidly deploy text-to-speech, voice and speech solutions for a variety of markets. Prosody presents choice in terms of the range of speech processing and data algorithms available, including support for Aculab’s text-to-speech and automatic speech recognition and speech partners’ products including those of Nuance, SpeechWorks, and others. For developers looking to deploy Aculab technology, this partnership will also afford them with a faster application development time for trial systems, with the end result being reduced time to market. The evolution of Aculab’s generic API, to provide a consistent programming interface, reduces the integration time of a combination of technologies including text-to-speech (TTS), automatic speech recognition (ASR), conferencing and fax 877-766-3987 (in North America), or +1.613.271.8989 (Internationally). contact: Katie Chaplin, Aculab, +44 (0) 1908 273 800 Chris Biber Pronexus, 613) 271 8989 xt.544, Tracey Williams, TWPR, +44 (0) 1225 723237

AudioCodes Unveils IPmedia Server to Support Enhanced Services For the New Voice Infrastructure: AudioCodes Ltd. (Nasdaq: AUDC)(Yehud, Israel), a provider of Voice over Packet technologies and systems has launched its Media Server Product Family to support IP-based local access and enhanced services for wireless, cable, Voice VPN and IP Centrex markets. As a result, AudioCodes now offers Network Equipment Providers (NEPs), softswitch vendors and application partners a one-stop-shop for complementary media gateway and media server solutions that support the leading call control protocols and can be easily integrated into a network management system. AudioCodes' IPmedia 2000 is an entry-level member of the AudioCodes family of market-ready, standards compliant media server systems. The IPmedia 2000 addresses the cost sensitive lower end of service deployments with flexible densities of up to 480 ports. It is capable of supporting a variety of media processing functions such as DTMF, prompts and announcements playback, audio recording, conferencing, trans-coding and speech recognition. Features offered by the AudioCodes' IPmedia 2000 include scalable product family, support in both PSTN and packet networks and an open platform architecture. A combination of VoIP and PSTN interfaces allows NEPs and application partners to deliver enhanced voice services on legacy PSTN networks and new packet-based networks. The IPmedia 2000 ranges in densities from 64 ports to 480 ports and is controlled by a variety of control protocols including SIP, MGCP and Megaco. In addition, extensive media processing functions are supported including DTMF, Voice Activity Detection (VAD), Automatic Gain Control (AGC), fax T.38 and T.37, conferencing mixing, trans-coding of various vocoders including G.723, G.726, G.729, GSM, AMR, EVRC, QCELP, and audio playback and record. AudioCodes is delivering the IPmedia 2000 Media Server to customers this quarter and expects to be shipping production quantities in the third quarter of 2002. Founded in 1993, AudioCodes Ltd. (Nasdaq: AUDC) provides network equipment providers and system integrators with voice over packet media gateway and media processing technology and systems solutions. The company is a market leader in voice compression technology and the key originator of the ITU G.723.1 standard for the emerging Voice over IP market. AudioCodes' has built on its market leading core technology expertise to develop enabling technology products and a carrier-grade product line. AudioCodes products include its media gateway systems, VoIP communication boards, VoIP media gateway modules, VoP chip processors, and analog media gateways for access and enterprise solutions. Its customers include the leading global telecom and datacom network equipment providers. Contact: Roy Essex of AudioCodes, 408-577-0488, Lior Weiss, Product Marketing Director of AudioCodes

Envox secures $5 million in 2nd round funding: Envox Group (Stockholm, Sweden) has raised $5 million from some of the leading venture capitalists in the Nordic region. Northzone Ventures, IT Provider, and EQVITEC Partners joined first round investors Servisen and Intel Communications Fund in this funding round. New Envox board member include Klas Gustafsson (Northzone) and Anders Lindqvist (IT Provider). This investment will be used to accelerate new product development, strengthen the company's marketing and sales efforts, and expand its global technical support capabilities. During April 2002, the company acquired the Show N Tel business from Sonexis, Inc. Since 1995 Northzone Ventures has evolved from being a start-up to become a significant long-term investor in Nordic start-up companies. Represented throughout the Nordic region, and with approximately -- $100 million under management, IT Provider is a leading Nordic venture capital advisory firm focused on accelerating growth in early stage Nordic technology companies, primarily in Sweden and Finland. The company seeks to make equity and equity-related early and expansion stage investments, concentrating on the Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) sector throughout the Nordic Region. IT Provider Adviser 1 AB advises three different investment funds with a total of SEK 2.5 billion under management. EQVITEC Partners is a Finnish value-added venture capital firm with 260 million Euros under management. The company invests in early and growth stage technology-intensive companies in the Nordic region and supports them in their development and expansion. Intel Capital, Intel's strategic investment program, focuses on making equity investments and acquisitions to grow the Internet economy, including Internet infrastructure, content and services in support of Intel's strategic interests. Servisen is a Swedish venture capital firm focused primarily on early stage investment in growth companies in the Nordic regionServisen has worked with Envox since 1998, adding growth capital and strategic advice. Contact: Gretchen Clarke, 508-871-7603, or Anneli Danielsson, +468 56 256 015,

NSC and TalkerNet Declare a Partnership:, TalkerNet and NSC(RISHON LE-ZION, Israel) have announced a partnership. TalkerNet develops speech gateway technology based on NSC's speech recognition engine. TalkerNet's speech gateway, TotalVoice, enables the development of cost effective speech driven information lines, voice portals, voice commerce applications and messaging solutions without the need of engineering, meaning minimal time to market. NSC's speech recognition engine running on a PCI board, enables application developers to develop speech-driven applications. Each board can run up to 120 concurrent speech recognition channels, depending on the speech recognition task complexity. Voice portals based on the products of TalkerNet and NSC have been activated recently in the UK with Independent Digital, the digital arm of Independent News & Media Group. A user could receive live information on world cup games right from Independent Digital web site, using a mobile phone and speech interface. NSC -- Natural Speech Communication Ltd. provides cost-competitive and high-density speech recognition boards for telephony speech-driven services. Thus, NSC's customers are able to build voice driven systems serving thousands of users simultaneously, while maintaining low costs, low footprint and low power consumption. TalkerNet Group, TalkerNet Group is a global voice portal and speech technology player. TalkerNet's speech gateway technology comprises speech recognition access, human sounding text-to-speech, audio, streaming, trascoding algorithms and voice browsing technology. TalkerNet enables content providers, mobile operators and organizations to develop cost effective speech driven information, voice commerce and messaging applications. TalkerNet has hosted and ready to license solutions. It enables carriers, content providers, organizations and businesses to develop speech driven services without the need of engineering or development expertise. +44207-6648700, Independent Digital Ltd (IDL) is the online division of Independent News and Media (UK) Ltd, publishers of The Independent, the Independent on Sunday and with a wide range of regional newspaper and magazine interests. IDL brings together the digital assets of this leading news, information and entertainment group, serving more than 17 million page impressions to its loyal customer base across the world. The Independent News and Media footprint spans four continents. In the UK IN&M owns the Belfast Telegraph, the leading newspaper group in Northern Ireland as well as the flagship Independent titles, and in addition has market leading newspaper positions in Australia, Ireland, New Zealand and South Africa. Contact: NSC -- Natural Speech Communication Ltd., Dr. Ami Moyal, +972-3-9519779, or TalkerNet Group, Ronen Devashi, +44207-6648700,

Plum VoiceXML IVR Enhanced With Open Source Festival TTS Components: The Plum Group, provider of advanced voice solutions and VoiceXML technology, announced today the integration of the Festival text-to-speech engine into the Plum VoiceXML interactive voice response (IVR) system. The open source Festival TTS system, developed by the Center for Speech Technology Research (CSTR - ) at the University of Edinburgh, is now available as a low cost speech module for the Plum Voice system. Originally developed at the University of Edinburgh, Festival has now been downloaded more than 50,000 times and is used by hundreds of speech synthesis researchers around the world both in academia and in industry. Using the FestVox tools from Carnegie-Mellon University ( ), voices have been built for Festival for over 40 languages. This list includes: English (various dialects) French, German, Spanish (various dialects), Italian, Swedish, Scots, Welsh and Irish Gaelic, Basque, Catalan, Breton, Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Croatian, Haitian Creole, Telugu, Hindi, Nepali, Turkish, Greek and even Klingon. Some are made available for free, others are commercial. Festival also supports SSML, an SGML based markup standard for tagging text with prosody and emphasis cues. In addition to the Festival TTS engine, Plum also offers AT&T Natural Voices speech synthesis as an option. Plum Voice Portals are a platform for robust, scalable IVR solutions built on Linux. Plum Voice Portals support VoiceXML 2.0, text-to-speech (TTS) synthesis, automatic speech recognition (ASR), and Dialogic telephony hardware. Plum also provides hosting, customer premise equipment, and professional services. Contact: Jennifer Johnson, The Plum Group, 800-995-PLUM, Matt Ervin, CEO

SpeechWorks Introduces T-S.T.E.P., A Suite of Technical Information and Programs Designed for Technology Professionals: SpeechWorks International, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPWX)(Boston, MA) ,unveiled a new, technology-focused customer program to accelerate an organization's time-to-results with speech services. Based on the success of SpeechWorks B-S.T.E.P. (Speech Technology Evaluation Process for Business Professionals) program, the T-S.T.E.P.. (Speech Technology Evaluation Program for Technology Professionals) program offers the same custom, consultative approach as SpeechWorks' landmark customer program, but is designed exclusively for an organization's technology professionals. SpeechWorks created the T-S.T.E.P. program to answer the demand from technology professionals tasked with evaluating the benefits and integration profiles of new technologies like speech. T-S.T.E.P. provides technologists with essential knowledge of speech technologies, user interface (UI) design, industry standards (e.g. VoiceXML, SALT, MRCP and others), technology benchmarking, platform integrations, and the technical integration process. Do You Have a Speech Strategy? Both T-S.T.E.P. and B-S.T.E.P. programs begin with a simple guideline titled, "Defining Your Company's Speech Strategy". A speech strategy is a company-wide blueprint for applying speech throughout an organization. Extending beyond point speech applications, the enterprise-wide speech strategy aims to achieve maximum benefits of cost-reduction, customer satisfaction, automated cross-and-up sells and brand congruity. The T-S.T.E.P. program is a simple, 5-step process that offers technology professionals the necessary tools and knowledge to make expert decisions on the right speech applications and deployment strategies for their business. SpeechWorks' application engineers guide the T-S.T.E.P. process through the following 5 steps: T-S.T.E.P. #1: SpeechWorks Here Foundation provides an overview of the fundamental speech technologies: automated speech recognition, text-to-speech and speaker verification. Foundation provides technical professionals with a solid foundation of information to quickly understand and evaluate speech technologies. SpeechWorks presents participants with an industry resource guide, a technical glossary, relevant white papers, and a suite of customized presentations, facilitated in an interactive forum. T-S.T.E.P. #2: SpeechWorks Here Evaluation presents a more in-depth, advanced suite of information that spans service deployment options, technology roadmaps, technology evaluation criteria, industry standards, multimodal applications and other customer-relevant technical topics. Evaluation delivers technology professionals the tools and knowledge to optimize time to deployment, R.O.I. and ease of integration. Evaluation participants can receive a Technical Evaluation Kit including an independent, third-party report which details an appropriate methodology for evaluating and benchmarking speech technologies. SpeechWorks presents Evaluation participants a suite of custom presentations, the Evaluation Kit, white papers, technical product profiles, an interactive presentation and more. T-S.T.E.P. #3: SpeechWorks Here Connections begins with a consultative workshop to discover the functional requirements of the speech application(s), evaluate platform options and determine key integration points to backend databases and CTI systems. SpeechWorks presents technologists with platform and UI TIPs (Technical Implementation Profiles) that describe partner technology integrations and UI design profiles. Following the Connections Workshop, SpeechWorks convenes business and technical S.T.E.P. participants for a Speech Summit, where SpeechWorks presents a summary technical specification document and Vision Clip that demonstrates how the speech service will sound in a real-life deployment. T-S.T.E.P. #4: SpeechWorks Here Guarantee is a money-back, results assurance commitment to customers. Here, technologists will learn about the technical requirements needed to achieve agreed-upon transaction completion rates (TCR). TCR is the percentage of calls that are completed successfully using speech recognition, without agent intervention. T-S.T.E.P. #5: SpeechWorks Here Technical Achievement Plan (TAP) provides proven development guidelines and maintenance and tuning advice to help customers achieve the greatest benefits from their speech system. TAP is a formal, customized transfer of information to ensure technologists have all the tools, training and information they need to maintain, tune and update their speech service going forward. A SpeechWorks Institute courseware review will profile hands-on training and lab-based courses on a variety of topics so customers can further develop, maintain and support their speech applications. A SpeechWorks Learning Module review will profile customized, intensive, on-site training session options as well. It's About the Caller. Following the customized TAP session, SpeechWorks will evaluate the application's "Speech IQ", a measurement of five Critical Speech Factors that can help companies achieve the highest return from their investment and optimum results. The five Critical Speech Factors include Caller Monetization, Caller Motivation, Caller Performance, Caller Affiliation and Caller Behavior. SpeechWorks will work with each customer to ensure that their speech application achieves the highest Speech IQ possible., 617-428-4444 Contact: SpeechWorks International, Leah Lesser/Marie Ruzzo, 617-428-4444,

Telisma Introduces new ASR Pricing Model: Telisma (Paris, France) has just announced a new ASR pricing model that is focused on reducing the up-front investment required for ASR-based systems. The pricing model is called Ticking. In addition to a basic per-port license fee which is relatively small, the price of the ASR is based on the number of words that are recognized correctly. Customers may purchase ASR on either a Prepaid or a Annual basis. One of the primary benefits of this pricing model is that it corresponds more directly with the actual value/usage of the ASR-based system. Exisitng pricing models are oriented towards peak traffic since you pay for the ASR ports whether or not they are actually utilized. This appears to be a truly innovative approach to ASR pricing although details of how this works are not yet available from Telisma. Contact: Xavier Baudouin, Product Line Manager, , Alexandra Romano, Rumeur Publique, +33 (0)1 56 97 20 00

Embedded Telematics – Products/Applications

Vehicle System and Hamg Shing Select Fortemedia's AMBIN FM1061, a Voice Processing Front End, for Hands Free Car Kits and Automotive Applications: Fortemedia Inc.(Cupertino, CA), a privately held company in Cupertino, California, announces several new major automotive suppliers designing Hands Free Car kits with Fortemedia's AMBIN FM1061 single chip solution. FM1061 voice processor, the first member of AMBIN (Array Microphone Beam-forming Integrated with Noise-suppression) product family, features excellent acoustic echo cancellation, unique side tone cancellation, and advanced noise suppression. This highly integrated mixed signal chip is ideal for hands-free and noise-free speaker phone applications such as Hands-free Car Kits, Telematics, or automotive electronic devices. Other Key Features of FM1061: -- High integration (DSP, two A/Ds, two D/As, ROM, and RAM) and small footprint (48pin LQFP). -- Programmability with an optional EEPROM for customization; -- Universal interface to support microphone in, speaker out, line in, line out, UART, I2C, I2S, and CHI bus interface; -- No need for external microcontroller. To meet very broad customers' requirements and short time-to-market, Hamg Shing(Taiwan) selects Fortemedia's FM1061 as the platform for our Hands Free Telematics solutions. FM1061 has superior acoustic echo cancellation with optional side tone cancellation resolving major system howling problems. The complete integration of hardware and software of FM1061 allows Hamg Shing to significantly shorten the time to market of our automotive products. FM1061 is available now, and is priced at $7 each in 1000-lot units. Fortemedia Inc. is a voice processing company enabling noise free mobile communications. Integrating array microphone technology and mixed signal technology, the company is focused on high growth markets for handsets, automotives, and other mobile devices. Contact: Fortemedia Inc., Hans Wang, 408-861-8088 ext. 119, Mr. Choi Kyung Su, president of Vehicle Systems

IDS, a European Provider of Geographical Information Systems and Cartographical software, has chosen Elan PocketSpeech to speech-enable their GPS Navigation Application, ID Navigator: ID Navigator is a GPS application, compatible with PC and PocketPC, which offers many functions to make street name searching and on-board navigating fast and efficient. ID Navigator uses Elan's text-to-speech to communicate directions for cars, bicycles or pedestrians, using up to date traffic information combined with high-quality map data. IDS developed ID Navigator by combining the most complete cartographical data on the market (TeleAtlas data for all regions) and high-quality technology (Opteway, Elan). Using Elan's text-to-speech, the users simply follow the directions without taking their eyes off the road, without getting lost, without wasting time. Elan PocketSpeech, a TTS component for PocketPC, will read any text out loud, smoothly recognising abbreviations, numbers, currencies and proper names, in 9 languages with a choice of 17 different voices. . Ccontact: Elan Speech, Caroline HouŽl - +33 (0)5 61 36 89 14

Mobile Knowledge And Comfort Transportation Revolutionize the Singapore Taxi Experience: Mobile Knowledge Inc.(TSE:MKN)(Toronto, Ontario), a provider of advanced GPS and wireless communications technology for fleet telematics applications, announced the successful installation of 3,500 state-of-the-art mobile data terminals in Singapore's largest taxi fleet, operated by Comfort Transportation. Comfort's entire fleet of 12,000 vehicles is now dispatched using the Mobile Knowledge system, which includes the multimedia-capable Series 6000 terminal and uses GPS-based closest vehicle dispatch to achieve significant gains in productivity, efficiency, and customer service. The Series 6000 terminal, the latest addition to the Mobile Knowledge product set, combines an open programming platform, unparalleled processing power, integrated GPS and advanced multimedia features such as a colour touch screen display, text-to-speech, internet connectivity and compact flash memory to enable a variety of interactive services for both drivers and passengers. Comfort has equipped 3,500 of its cabs with the new Series 6000 terminals, building on its proven success with the Mobile Knowledge system, which was deployed in 8,000 cabs several years ago and resulted in a 1000% increase in the number of jobs that could be dispatched each day. Mobile Knowledge uses GPS and wireless communications technology to deliver advanced mobile data solutions for commercial fleet management and telematics applications. Building on global customer relationships and over 20 years of experience in the taxi dispatch market, Mobile Knowledge offers a highly flexible product set to help businesses manage and protect valuable mobile assets, improve productivity, and generate new revenue streams. Contact: 613-271-1601 x 1097 Susan Sykes, Mobile Knowledge Public & Investor Relations, David Levy, President & CEO of Mobile Knowledge, Yang Ban Seng, Executive Director of Comfort Transportation

Pioneer Combines Information and Entertainment In Its DVD-Based Navigation System: Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc.(NYSE:PIO)(Long Beach, CA), a supplier of mobile entertainment products, released its AVIC-90DVD advanced in-car DVD-based navigation system that provides consumers with step-by-step directions to any destination within the United States and Canada, as well as DVD playback capability. Within seconds, the AVIC-90DVD gives accurate and efficient directions to any destination. According to a 2002 J.D. Power study on emerging automotive technologies, 61 percent of U.S. consumers are interested in an in-car navigation system. For those consumers, Pioneer's AVIC-90DVD offers voice activation, advanced 3D graphics, 2 million points of interest (POI) and DVD video playback capability, making it the most advanced navigation system in the market. The market for an entertainment and information system like Pioneer's AVIC-90DVD is growing beyond the luxury market to encompass all consumers who want access to easy-to-follow directions without the hassle of paper maps. The AVIC-90DVD is available for a estimated market price of $1,900. The NAV-SYS900DVD packaged system, is also available for $2,800 which includes the AVH-P6400CD and AVIC-90DVD. Pioneer's Mobile Entertainment Division is a leading manufacturer of audio, video and information products for in-car use. The company markets its products under the Pioneer and Premier brand names. Its focus is on the development of new digital technologies including visual/audio, navigation, and satellite radio, while maintaining its strong heritage in products for car audio enthusiasts and competitors. Pioneer Corporation (NYSE: PIO) is a leader in optical disc technology and a preeminent manufacturer of high-performance audio, video, computer and cable television equipment for the home, car and industrial markets. The company focuses on four core business domains including DVD, display technologies, Digital Network Entertainment and components. Founded in 1938 in Tokyo, Pioneer Corporation employs more than 31,000 people worldwide. Contact: Jaed Arzadon of Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc., 310-952-2451, or Steve Bonsignore, 212-537-8094, for Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. Michael Townsen, vice president of marketing for mobile entertainment at Pioneer Electronics

ScanSoft RealSpeak Compact SDK: ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT)(Peabody, MA) announced the ScanSoft RealSpeak Compact SDK, the industry's preeminent text-to-speech (TTS) solution for automotive and mobile applications. RealSpeak Compact allows developers to add human-sounding speech capabilities to applications developed for devices with small processing and memory capabilities, including those based upon Microsoft Windows CE and Linux. The system supports US English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Castilian Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese and Swedish languages, depending upon SDK configuration. Until now, the limited resources of small-footprint devices relegated applications to formant technology for speech, which uses machine-generated sound to create words - utilizing less processing resources but resulting in machine-like speech. RealSpeak Compact is significant because it delivers to small-footprint devices the TTS quality previously reserved for high-end server and telephony applications. RealSpeak Compact is based upon concatenative technology, which combines segments of real human speech to form new words and phrases. ScanSoft claims that RealSpeak Compact delivers high-quality speech with smaller disk and memory requirements than competing solutions. The system is appropriate for adding speech to embedded device applications, bringing to mobile applications the same high quality sound, inflection, tone and pace previously available only on server-based systems. Text-to-speech is particularly important for small- and no-display devices, providing an effective way to deliver interactive prompts as well Web, email and wireless content. The ScanSoft RealSpeak Compact SDK is used to speech-enable virtually any application, including: -- Custom or commercial applications; -- Sales force automation and database applications; -- Email, calendar and personal contacts; -- Navigational systems and services; -- Web applications and content; -- Electronic forms (eForms); -- Wireless communication devices; The ScanSoft RealSpeak Compact SDK supports Microsoft SAPI as well as ScanSoft SpeechAPI (API for PC and devices) programming interfaces. Applications can be developed for Microsoft Windows CE, Microsoft Windows CE for Automotive and Linux operating systems, running on NEC MIPS, Hitachi SH3, SH4 and Intel x86, StrongARM and XScale chipsets. Supported languages include US English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Castilian Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, and Swedish. . Contact: ScanSoft, Inc., Jane Van Saun, 978-977-2114,

Embedded Telematics – Partnerships/Financial

ART and SVOX Partner: ART Advanced Recognition Technologies, Inc. and SVOX (Zurich, Switzerland) have signed a technical cooperation and co-marketing agreement. SVOX and ART will be offering a comprehensive speech recognition and TTS (text-to-speech) solution for cellular handsets, wireless devices, PDAs and automotive systems. Integrating the companies’ two advanced technologies, the solution will provide a complete user interface for a whole range of new applications designed for all Symbian-based and Smartphone 2002 platforms, as well as ARM 7-based handsets. One major benefit of this cooperation will be improved safety on the road. For example, a driver who wants to make a phone call will use speech recognition from ART to voice-dial. Then the text-to-speech application from SVOX will read back the name or number, thus enabling the driver to confirm its accuracy without looking away from the road. SVOX AG was founded in April 2000 as a spin-off of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH Zurich). Its core product is text-to-speech software. The SVOX technology is used in fields such as telecommunications, call centers, multimedia/Internet and embedded systems. SVOX differentiates itself by offering customized text-to-speech. Contact: ART Advanced Recognition Technologies, Inc., Roy Timor, +972-3-642-7242, ext. 139, Gabi Artzi, 805-581-3999, SVOX, Eliane Christeller, +41 1 632 08 48,

Leading 'Hands-Free' Car-Kit Provider - Peiker - Licenses Clarity's Award Winning CVC: Clarity LLC ( Troy, MI) announced that Peiker acustic GmbH & Co. KG , a worldwide leader and supplier of automotive microphones and wireless communications technologies and products, has licensed Clarity's CVC (Clear Voice Capture) software technology in its premium Bluetooth hands- free car-kit system for the automobile, which is being introduced with certain DaimlerChrysler 2003 model products. Clarity is also licensing its proprietary CVC technology to Peiker for all its hands-free systems in its European markets and Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) customers throughout the world. Clarity's proprietary software portfolio includes its voice extraction software that captures the voice of interest from background sounds (including other voices) as opposed to the more common noise cancellation approaches that simply suppress noise components. This makes the voice more intelligible for the human ear, more recognizable for the computer and optimizes bandwidth in CDMA telecommunications networks. Peiker is recognized as an industry leader in providing hands-free cellular products to the automobile industry. Its products have been available in Mercedes and BMW products in Europe and Asia. The hands-free kits will initially support popular Nokia and Motorola brand phones. Bluetooth is a specification for low-power, short-range wireless connection system enabling devices equipped with this technology to communicate with each other. In this example, cell phones equipped with Bluetooth can reside in your briefcase, pocket or hands-free cradle and you can communicate into an external microphone in your car using voice commands enabled with speech recognition features and CVC. Founded in 1946 in Friedrichsdorf, Germany, Peiker is considered the preeminent supplier of high quality hands-free speech solutions for the automobile industry. Contact: Larry T. Eiler of Eiler Communications, +1-734-761-3399, Cell: +1-734-646-6593, for Clarity LLC, Ray Gunn, president and CEO, Clarity, Michael Beitler, Peiker general manager.

Fonix to Deploy Speech Solutions To a 2.5G Device Using Texas Instruments' OMAP Platform: Fonix Corporation (OTC Bulletin Board: FONX), a provider of natural-user interface technology for wireless and mobile devices, Internet and telephony systems, and vehicle telematics, claims that it will become the first speech technology provider to offer Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) and Text-To- Speech (TTS) capabilities on commercially available products that use Texas Instruments' OMAP framework. Fonix Speech Solutions, currently deployed in several PDA devices, including Hewlett-Packard's Jornada 928 Wireless Digital Assistant (WDA) demonstrate the ability of the OMAP platform to support natural language interface. Texas Instruments' OMAP platform for wireless processing delivers voice and multimedia enhanced applications for 2.5G and 3G wireless phones, PDAs, and advanced mobile Internet appliances. Fonix Speech Solutions that run on the TI OMAP platform enable users to use their voice to navigate through their devices, to launch and close applications, and to access and dial contacts, all with no voice training required. OMAP developers benefit from TI's fully open OMAP platform, which has been selected by Hewlett-Packard, Nokia, Ericsson, Sony, Palm, NEC, Fujitsu, Sendo, HTC, and others for the companies' 2.5 and 3G wireless devices. Fonix is a member of TI's OMAP Developer Network, a diverse group of software developers writing wireless applications for mobile Internet devices. OMAP developers enjoy a variety of tools and support to enable rapid application development for leading operating systems and programming languages. Contact: Michelle Aamodt, 801-328-0161, Whitney Seamons of Fonix Corporation, 801-553-6600,

Fulcrum Voice Technologies Partners with EADS-Telecom: Fulcrum Voice Technologies (High Wycombe, UK) is partnering with EADS-Telecom (France) on a European Commission part-funded Euro 1.7M research project ‘AnITA’ ( Audio eNhancement In secure Telecom Applications) under the EC 5th Framework, IST 6 Programme. The project also includes partners from Spain, Sweden and Germany. The AnITA project, coordinated by EADS-Telecom, is to research new Noise Cancellation / Voice Enhancement methods, using novel signal processing techniques, for PMR (Private Mobile Radio) applications in emergency service and security applications. The project is centered on Tetrapol Applications but will be applicable to Tetra, APCO 25, and existing Analogue transmission standards. Fulcrum was chosen for this project as a result of its significant experience, expertise, and work with signal processing and acoustics with the UK Home Office / Emergency services relating to Siren and Wind/Road noise cancellation for PMR radio applications. The 30 month project, starting now, involves 3 other European partners: KTH University (Sweden), FAU University (Germany) and Tradia (Spain) to address all aspects of Voice Input techniques, Noise Cancellation/Voice enhancement, Voice Switching in both fixed mobile and hand portable PMR applications. The European Commission rated the AnITA Project an overall high score of 4/5 on variety of criteria, which included technical challenge, complexity, commercial benefits to Europe, and enhancement to citizens of the EC. Fulcrum provides solutions for OEM clients within the Telecoms, Automotive, Radiocoms, and Internet Voice markets. Current research/development projects for the Automotive Market Segment within Fulcrum include Microphone Array’s, Wind/Road/Engine Noise Cancellation to enable voice control and communication. Contact: Fulcrums’ MD Bob Andrews

Wingcast Folds: Wingcast (San Diego, CA), the two-year-old telematics joint venture between Ford Motor and Qualcomm closed its doors. Somewhat conflicting reasons for the closure include changing technology and new customer desires, but also poor sales by Ford and a hint that Bluetooth may be preferable to cell phone technology. There are several signs that Wingcast CEO Kodesh and the 150 Wingcast employees were caught by surprise. Last week, it was announced that Kodesh would be a keynote speaker at the Telematics Systems 2002 conference in Gothenburg, Sweden at the end of June. Two weeks ago, Kodesh announced an agreement with Hewlett-Packard to market remote vehicle diagnostic and prognostic systems to automobile manufacturers. Wingcast was owned approximately 85% by Ford and 15% by Qualcomm, and was created in October 2000 to provide telematics services. Ford had been the sole funding contributor of Wingcast since May 2001. Prior to that date, Qualcomm had invested $25 million in exchange for the 15% equity stake in Wingcast. Ford has never publicly stated how much it had invested in Wingcast. Qualcomm previously recorded approximately $14 million in losses related to its equity interest in Wingcast, reducing the investment to approximately $11 million. Today's decision to dissolve Wingcast is expected to result in the impairment of certain Wingcast assets. As a result, Qualcomm said it expects to write off up to approximately $11 million on its remaining investment in the third fiscal quarter of this year. Wingcast is based on CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access), a system that has been in is an IS-95 based digital technology for delivering mobile telephone services commercially since 1995. CDMA networks operate in the 800 and 1900 MHz frequency bands with primary markets in the Americas and Asia. CDMA technology provides for voice and data services up to speeds of 64 kbits/sec, as well as integrated voice mail and SMS services. Ford continues to work on telematics, exploring both CDMA and Bluetooth. "We have a lot of work to do. This is a very exciting future," Kodesh said two weeks ago. Kodesh, a former Microsoft Corp. vice president, was upbeat about the future at the Telematics Detroit 2002 conference. He said then that Wingcast would be launched initially in North America, but the service could have more promise in Europe and Japan. Wingcast will eventually take over Ford's telematics operations already in place in Europe, he said. Autodata reported today that Ford's May sales were down 12% in May, attributing the drop to the withdrawal of zero interest loans and rebates that were withdrawn in April. General Motors also dropped 12% in May. Most auto makers worldwide have seen a drop in sales, with the exception of BMW, Hyundai and Kia, where sales increased last Month. Contact: Douglas R. Van Dagens, director of Wireless Mobility for Ford Motor

Embedded Appliances – Products/Partnerships/Financial

ArialPhone Corp. Launches Nationwide Reseller Program Aimed at Computer Telephony Market: ArialPhone Corp.(Mundelein, IL), a provider of wireless communications devices and voice-enabling software, announced a new nationwide reseller program designed to extend the reach of the company's sales efforts into the computer telephony market. Resellers specializing in telephony systems and computer telephony products can participate in the program, which features the one-ounce, wearable ArialPhone. The ArialPhone represents a new breed of voice-activated communications product that allows users to place phone calls using their computer contact database -- simply by saying a person's name. Its patented, hands-free Earset design enables users to move untethered as far as 150 to 300 feet from their PCs as they place and receive phone calls. Productivity and efficiency gains are realized because the user can perform automated contact management functions, such as voice dialing by name, while moving about the home or office. The wireless ArialPhone utilizes standard phone lines, which means no monthly service fees are involved. The ArialPhone reseller program combines an aggressive lead generation and lead sharing effort with exhibits at popular industry trade shows, and favorable terms and conditions. , 847-949-3173. Contact: ArialPhone Corp., Mike Wagener, 847-573-9925,

Voice Signal's ASR With Hasbro's "ALOHA STITCH" Toy: Hasbro, Inc., (NYSE:HAS)(Springfield, MA) one of the world's leading toy and game companies, has begun shipping its new "ALOHA STITCH" interactive toy with speech recognition software from Voice Signal Technologies (Woburn, MA). Inspired by the mischievous character in Walt Disney Pictures' animated feature film "LILO & STITCH," "ALOHA STITCH" uses Voice Signal's MicroREC software to recognize spoken phrases, and then immediately responds with an appropriate action or reply. Released Friday, June 21, "LILO & STITCH" grossed $35.8 million dollars over the weekend, according to Disney. "ALOHA STITCH," reflects the two-sided personality of the intergalactic fugitive from "LILO & STITCH." Depending on whether he is in a good mood or a bad mood, "ALOHA STITCH" responds to over a dozen spoken phrases with one of 35 different lovable or a feisty responses -- and even tells knock-knock jokes. Because he is so unpredictable, kids will never know what he will say next. Hasbro is a worldwide leader in children's and family leisure time entertainment products and services, including the design, manufacture and marketing of games and toys ranging from traditional to high-tech. Both internationally and in the U.S., its PLAYSKOOL, TONKA, MILTON BRADLEY, PARKER BROTHERS, TIGER, and WIZARDS OF THE COAST brands are well known. Renee L. Blodgett, 617-484-0063, or Gary Serby, Hasbro, 401-727-5582,

Desktop – Products/Applications

3dMe Animated Character Messaging Platform for the PC: 3dMe (Cambridge, MA) launched 3dMe Messenger, a character based messaging platform where users literally put their words in the mouths of an array of 3-D animated characters, which speak the words and send them across the Internet. This product represents the first look at the technology created by 3dMe, the content, software and consumer communications company, which provides premium character based multimedia messaging for PC's and mobile phones. 3dMe Messenger provides an entertaining interface that allows people to select a 3-D character, animate its expressions and record or key in the messages that the character will speak to the recipient of the message. In seconds, the user can create and send the complete message to friends or associates via an email or an Instant Message attachment on their PCs. One unique feature is the Mood Wheel, in which the user can select and control a character's facial expressions and moods, ranging from excited or silly to sad or bored. Speech and lip synchronization is created from either text to speech functionality or from real time speech recognition making communication possible across multiple languages. 3dMe is introducing several character personalities including Shmenk, Floyd, Leona and Albert for people to use in communicating messages. The company will create, license and release new characters every month. The 3dMe service is initially targeting heavy Internet communicators including power users of email, Instant Messaging, Chat and games, and will also unveil cross platform initiatives to appeal to WAP, SMS, MMS and picture messaging users. The 3dMe Messenger platform is available on a free trial basis from and on June 28th from The annual subscription price for the platform, all upgrades and a new character-a-month is available at the introductory price of $9.95. 3dMe is a multimedia communications company that delivers animated 3-D character based messaging solutions to the Mobile, Internet and Media markets. The 3dMe solution is comprised of the Emote messaging server, 3dMe Messenger software for the PC and the 3dMe character library. Founded in February 2000, 3dMe is a privately held C Corporation with offices in Los Angeles and Israel. 3dMe secured Series A investment in May, 2001 from Rein Capital Partners. Contact: Media Boston International, 617-266-5969, Suzanne McGee, Ian Robb Todd Griffith, President and CEO of 3dMe

Andrea Electronics' Launches Superbeam Array Microphone: Andrea Electronics Corporation (Amex: AND)(Melville, NY) launched its Superbeam Array Microphone, a breakthrough PC microphone peripheral that was designed to enable widespread adoption of voice as a mainstream, end-user productivity tool. The Superbeam Array, enabled with Andrea's PureAudio and DSDA technologies, can be purchased at a price lower than a standard PC headset and represents the computer industry's first affordable microphone device that not only overcomes unwanted acoustical and electrical noises, but also the common end-user objection to wearing a headset. The Suberbeam Array is targeted for mainstream, speech-based desktop PC applications such as VoIP, voice command and control for data mining, as well as for various speech-to-text applications. The Superbeam Array Microphone is a sleek, two-microphone device that attaches to the top of any laptop or PC equipped with Analog Devices' SoundMax Cadenza Digital Audio System. The SoundMax Cadenza software is integrated with Andrea Electronics' PureAudio and DSDA (Digital Super Directional Array) noise-cancellation software, thereby removing the high costs associated with required memory and processing power from previous, DSP-based microphone devices (now powered by Intel's host processor). The Superbeam Array Microphone is available directly from Andrea Electronics Corporation for $24.95; , or call Andrea Electronics' 1-800-707-5779. The SoundMAX Digital Audio System from Analog Devices, which ships in over 50% of PCs and brand motherboards today through such customers as Intel, Dell, Compaq, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Sony, Fujitsu, FSC and NEC, among others, is a premium-performance PC audio solution that exceeds the functionality of premium sound cards. The SoundMAX system features full-duplex functionality, immersive 3D surround-sound, MIDI music synthesis, noise reduction functionality, and next-generation audio rendering technologies. Residing on the PC's motherboard, the SoundMAX system consists of high-performance hardware CODECs, with features such as hardware sample rate conversion (SRC), professional quality 94-dB playback, and speaker equalization (EQ). ADI's newest audio CODEC, the AD1980, features support for six-channel audio output and is already available on the Intel D845EBT Desktop Board. The SoundMAX software, which is integrated into the PC's audio subsystem, includes Windows device drivers and applications that support 3D audio, Microsoft DirectX( 8.0, EAX, A3D, unlimited voice DLS-2 wavetable, and support for 5.1 virtual theater surround. SoundMAX also features SPX "audio animation" technologies. 800-442-7787. ELECTRONICS CORPORATION, Richard A. Maue, Chief Financial Officer, Lauren Rivera, Marketing Communications Manager, 800-447-7787, Joel Christensen, Marketing Director of Intel's Desktop Platform Solutions Division

Ectaco, Inc. releases new Partner Dictionary English-Dutch software for Pocket PC: Ectaco Inc. (St Petersburg, Russia), a leader in the development and manufacture of portable linguistic devices and software has released new Partner English-Dutch dictionary software for Pocket PC devices. The new software provides bi-directional translation between English and Dutch. Since the foundation of the company in 1990, Ectaco has produced 6 generations of Universal Translator, Language Teacher and Partner electronic dictionaries, translating from and into over 20 languages. Contact: Andrew Cooper, Public Relations Executive,

Ectaco, Inc. and VoiceMethods Unveil the New Tourist Phrase Bank with Russian and English Speech Recognition : Ectaco, Inc. has released the Ectaco Partner UT-203 ), the first tourist phrase bank in the world developed on the basis of VoiceMethods speech recognition technologies. The device contains around 3,000 recognition-ready phrases, present in 15 topics: - Everyday Conversation; - Traveling - Local transport; - Driving; - Hotel; - Restaurant; - Shopping; - Post office; - Telephone; - Bank - Sightseeing; - Health; - Housekeeper; - Beauty salon; - Sport. These topics describe the most common everyday situations that occur on a trip abroad. The phrases have been thoroughly selected in order to satisfy 80% of human communication needs while traveling. Working with the UT-203 is quite simple. The user pronounces a phrase in Russian, the device recognizes this phrase, translates it and pronounces the translation in English or German. Accordingly, when an English phrase is pronounced, it is translated into Russian or German. A special multi-function control button allows a rapid navigation between the topics and phrases, and a liquid crystal display shows the recognized and translated phrases. may currently pre-order the UT-203. VoiceMethods, LLC ( develops customized enterprise-class solutions for corporate clients, enabling existing and newly developed business applications. Contact: Andrew Cooper, Public Relations Executive, Ectaco, Inc., VoiceMethods President Anatoly Kissen

Ectaco, Inc. Releases New Speech Recognition Product – the Partner Voice Translator English-Chinese Phrasebank for PocketPC: Ectaco Inc. (New York) has released English - Mandarin Chinese tourist phrase bank developed on the basis of speech recognition technologies – the Partner Voice Translator English-Chinese Phrasebank for Pocket PC. PocketPC Partner Voice Translator contains approximately 2800 of the most commonly used phrases, specially selected to satisfy around 80% of travelers’ communication needs. These phrases are presented in 15 subject categories: - Everyday Phrases – Travelling - Local Transport – Automobile – Hotel – Restaurant – Shopping - Post Office – Telephone – Bank – Sightseeing – Health – Housekeeper - Beauty Salon – Sport. Selecting the subject category he or she needs, the user says a phrase in English from the list. The program recognizes the phrase, translates it and produces a translation in Chinese. The translated phrase in Chinese also appears on the screen of the handheld device being used. The Partner English-ChineseVoice Translator has a range of distinctive features: - Uses improved VoiceMethods technology - Contemporary design, with the latest ergonimic improvements - Choice of character representation: traditional or simplified. . Contact: Andrew Cooper, Public Relations Executive, Ectaco, Inc., VoiceMethods President Anatoly Kissen

Fonix Introduces iSpeak for Pocket PC,: Fonix Corporation (Salt Lake City, UT), a provider of natural-user interface technology for wireless and mobile devices, Internet and telephony systems, and vehicle telematics, announced the release of iSpeak for Pocket PC, a Text-To-Speech (TTS) application for Pocket PC devices that reads any text file aloud in a natural-sounding male or female voice. iSpeak for Pocket PC increases the productivity of Pocket PC handheld device users, giving them the option of listening to email, text documents, speeches, presentations, and more while on the go. With iSpeak for Pocket PC, anyone can catch up on correspondence, listen to reports, enjoy a digital book, even listen to his or her favorite music in MP3 (.mp3) or Wave (.wav) formats. The software is especially valuable for people who are driving, exercising, or doing other activities that occupy hands or eyes. iSpeak for Pocket PC gives users the option of listening to text in 11 different U.S. English TTS voices, both male and female. Additional voices that read text in U.K. English, French, German, Spanish, or Swedish, can be purchased separately. Through its user interface, iSpeak for Pocket PC leverages the power of Pocket PC devices to download email, web pages, text files, and more from a desktop PC. The application takes full advantage of Microsoft Outlook email management; the software enables individuals to listen to their favorite MP3 (.mp3) or Wave (.wav) music files in their native format, with no additional software needed. System requirements for iSpeak for Pocket PC include a desktop PC running Microsoft Windows 98, NT, ME, 2000, or XP, with 8 MB of available disk space and CD-ROM drive; a Pocket PC 2000 or 2002 device running Intel StrongARM (SA-1110) processor with 2 MB available device memory (minimum, with 9 MB required for all voices); a docking cradle or other PC connection; and Microsoft ActiveSync 3.1 or greater. Fonix iSpeak for Pocket PC is priced at $29.95 (MSRP), and is available at leading retailers or from the Fonix corporate website 801-553-6600. Contact: 801-328-0161 Investor Contact, Michelle Aamodt,

NEC Demonstrates Japanese/English Communication Software for Pocket-Type PDAs at the New Tokyo International Airport: NEC Corporation (NEC) (NASDAQ: NIPNY)(Tokyo) announced the trial service of a Japanese/English communication software for the pocket-type PDA, that translates and reads aloud simultaneously, verbally inputted Japanese and English phrases from either language to the other. The trial service was demonstrated during the Korea/Japan hosted Soccer World Cup 2002 (May 31-June 31) at New Tokyo International Airport in cooperation with the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport and the Narita Airport Authority. This PDA targeted software utilizes the functions of the "Tabitsu" communication software originally developed for PCs, which includes translating and reading-out verbally inputted Japanese and English phrases. The software covers a wide variety of travel related situations such as hotel check procedure and ordering at restaurants, allowing travelers to use the PDA as a communication tool abroad. After the trial period, NEC will modify the software in line with the demonstration results and intend to launch the product as soon as possible. NEC will further expand the development of this real-time translation technology, aiming to improve the usability of this new product and expand the various situations where it can support the lives of individuals. "Tabitsu" Japanese speech recognition is based on standard Japanese accent/intonation and English NEC Corporation (NASDAQ: NIPNY) (FTSE: 6701q.1) is one of the world's leading providers of Internet, broadband network and enterprise business solutions dedicated to meeting the specialized needs of its diverse and global base of customers. Ranked as one of the world's top patent-producing companies, NEC delivers tailored solutions in the key fields of computer, networking and electron devices, through its three market-focused, in-house companies: NEC Solutions, NEC Networks and NEC Electron Devices. NEC Corporation employs more than 140,000 people worldwide and had net sales of approximately $39 billion in the fiscal year ended March 2002. Contact: Japan, Susumu Sakamoto, NEC Corporation, +81-3-3798-6511,

ScanSoft Launches Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition in Europe with the Broadest Language Support Available: ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT) (Peabody, MA) launched ScanSoft Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition, the latest release of its speech recognition software for Europe. The new Dragon NaturallySpeaking software is available for home, small business, corporate and vertical market customers, supporting a range of languages, including Dutch, German, French, Italian and Spanish. Versions of the product supporting World English, Japanese and Chinese were introduced earlier this year. ScanSoft Dragon NaturallySpeaking is a leading automatic dictation and speech recognition product for Microsoft Windows and Windows XP. Dragon NaturallySpeaking also enables voice-control of Microsoft Windows operating system commands and third-party PC applications, giving users an efficient way to start programs, save files, surf the Web and create email. Dragon NaturallySpeaking achieves its accuracy in part through a built-in vocabulary of more than 250,000 words, and through its support for adding custom vocabularies. The product is available in four editions, giving users the freedom to select a product that meets their specific needs. These include: -- Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition Standard is a highly accurate, easy-to-use speech recognition product focused on creating text documents and e-mails for home computer users and their families. -- Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition Preferred is a full featured, highly accurate, easy-to-use speech recognition product focused on creating and editing text documents, reports and e-mails for small office and home office users. -- Dragon NaturallySpeaking Professional is ScanSoft's leading speech recognition product aimed at the professional and corporate user. DNS Professional is a powerful productivity tool that enables corporate and professional users to work faster and more efficiently. -- Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition Legal is available in German and is designed for the special needs of legal professionals. It includes an extensive vocabulary of legal terms, phrases and acronyms. Key benefits of the Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition include (features may vary by edition): -- The industry's highest accuracy rate for desktop automatic speech recognition -- Converting voice into text at up to 160 words-per-minute -- Hands-free, voice-enabled control of Microsoft Windows-based applications -- Ability to expand and customize the vocabulary -- Option to have e-mails and other documents read aloud using the RealSpeak -- Fast Web surfing using your voice to navigate URLs -- Keyboard-less text entry for popular instant messaging, chat and e-mail programs. The new Dragon NaturallySpeaking XP Edition is available immediately through ScanSoft's network of VAR's, retailers, Web store and catalogues. Contact: International Contact, ScanSoft, Inc., Vanessa Richter, + 32 9 239 8031, or US Contact, ScanSoft, Inc., Jane Van Saun, 978- 977-2114,

WENR CORP. - WENR and VCA Develop Voice Controlled DVD Player: VoiceDVD (Vancouver, BC), a wholly owned subsidiary of WENR Corp. (, and VCA Interactive, a division of VCA Labs Inc., a leading producer of adult entertainment, have developed a voice-controlled DVD player software. VCA is releasing a Beta version of the DVD player on an upcoming title in July. Once testing is completed, the player will be incorporated into an interactive title to be released January 2003. VoiceDVD was created to allow viewers to control their DVD players with voice commands. VoiceDVD licensed the technology from ScreenFriends Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of WENR Corp. VoiceDVD and VCA jointly developed the DVD player software. Initially the VoiceDVD will be sold by VCA, but in the future the technology may be licensed to other studios. Purchasers of upcoming VCA Interactive DVD's will be able to operate the DVD player with voice commands for common functions, such as "play, pause, fast forward, etc." The player will also enable the user to command embedded functionality that will emulate conversing with the actors in the movie, thereby creating a "truly" interactive experience for the users. The software, accessible only through Windows-based computers, will allow users to access functions such as menu items and skipping chapters. Allen Gold, head of VCA Interactive, said the speech recognition software is also being written to understand variations of commands that will take viewers to specific angles, actions and points on the disc. If users' acceptance is positive, VoiceDVD is planning to bring this technology to standard DVD players. Contact: 310-216-7700, ext. 231 Dan Green, WENR Corp.,

Zform Introduces Zform Poker: Zform(Northampton, MA) has just released their first product, ZForm Poker; an on-line, multiplayer version of five-card-draw poker. The game exemplifies ZForm's mission of bringing blind, low vision, and fully sighted together to play and interact as equals, uniting friends and family around the world Zform creates online games that enable the visually impaired and their sighted friends to play and interact together as equals. ZForm Poker is a multiplayer, online version of five-card-draw poker that uses fake poker chips and is played on a PC with friends and family via the Internet. Some comments from players of ZForm Poker: "ZForm has truly brought a new and pleasant meaning to the term Global village, and if poker is to be used as a yardstick to measure the success of building a community, then I say let there be more of such games," said a player of ZForm Poker from Singapore. ZForm Poker is engineered so that blind players using even a low-end Pentium with a screen reader and a slow modem have no problem keeping up with game play. The game takes advantage of Microsoft's free SAPI technology to be self-voicing, requiring no other products to make it accessible to the visually impaired. It also features tight integration with the two most popular screen-reading packages, Jaws for Windows from Freedom Scientific and Window-Eyes from GW Micro, allowing users of these products to enjoy a seamless gaming experience. At the press of a key, a player can find out what cards she or he has, what hand, how many chips, which players are also in the game and how many chips each has, and whose turn it is. There are many other pieces of information that can be determined by a single keystroke, and how much a player hears can be set to a "beginner level", so as not to miss a second of what is happening, or an "experienced level", which cuts down on the amount of information that is spoken. The game is highly customizable, allowing users the ability to modify many aspects of the program to suit their tastes. ZForm Poker offers players, blind or sighted, the ability to play at a variety of levels, ranging from beginner, with lower stakes and a slower pace, to the high-paced "High-Rollers" tables. There is also an option to play as a single player against a couple of computer players, which is a great way to familiarize oneself with the way the game works. Extensive help is available both from within the game and online. ZForm Poker can be downloaded and evaluated free for fifteen days through the company's website. After that, players can subscribe to ZForm Poker for $7.95 a month - helping to support the continued development of games that bring blind and sighted together as equals. ZForm is a young company with an innovative mission, to create online games that enable the visually impaired and their sighted friends to play and interact together as equals. Contact: ZForm cofounder & CEO Paul G. Silva, 413-585-9692,

Desktop – Partnerships/Financial

Expresiv Technologies Secures $9.8 Million in Funding; Company Changes Name to Reflect Expanded Operations: Expresiv Technologies Inc. (formerly MD Productivity Inc.)(Austin, TX) has secured $9.8 million in funding. The Series A funding round was led by Polaris Venture Partners and supported by Eaglestone Capital and Independent Bankers Capital, with bridge financing by Eyes of Texas Partners. Expresiv currently develops speech recognition and transcription technology and solutions for the healthcare industry. The company plans to use the investment to support marketing, sales, product development and expansion into new markets. Founded in 1998, Expresiv has focused its development efforts on delivering solutions that set an industry-leading standard of superior design in medical transcription applications, incorporating physician workflow needs and the strategic data integration requirements associated with the lifetime clinical record or data repository goals. Leveraging speech recognition and proprietary workflow design, productivity tools and utilities, Expresiv's solutions enable clients to dramatically reduce costs, eliminate errors, improve turnaround time and better manage clinical patient data and compliance. Expresiv provides advanced, continuous speech recognition and workflow software solutions designed to improve the capture, management and distribution of critical data for the healthcare industry. Expresiv Technologies was founded in 1998 and has over 3,000 customers nationwide. The Company is backed by Polaris Venture Partners, Eaglestone Capital, Independent Bankers Capital and Eyes of Texas Partners. Contact: Expresiv Technologies, Nancy Rush, 512-336-2833, ext. 167, Tom Herring, chairman and CEO of Expresiv Technologies

MedQuist Inc. to Acquire Lanier Healthcare: MedQuist Inc. (Nasdaq:MEDQ)(Marlton, NJ) has signed an agreement to acquire Lanier Healthcare from Platinum Equity, LLC ( ). The combined operations will provide solutions that incorporate the latest technologies, such as speech recognition and natural language processing, to capture, document and distribute timely health care information. MedQuist is the leading national provider of medical transcription services, a key component in the provision of health care services. Through approximately 9,800 transcriptionists, proprietary software, sophisticated digital dictation equipment and ability to interface with health care providers' computer systems, we provide customized solutions to shorten our customers' billing cycles and reduce their overhead and other administrative costs. MedQuist serves approximately 3,200 clients nationwide through our 87 client service centers and satellite offices. Lanier Healthcare, based in Atlanta, is focused on the delivery of enterprise and Web applications targeting the creation and connection of mission-critical health information, including transcription, dictation, electronic signature and speech recognition solutions. The company has an established customer base of more than 285,000 physicians, a 50 percent market share in acute care hospitals and approximately 480 employees. Contact: MedQuist Inc., Brian Kearns, CFO, 856/810-8000 x4418, David Cohen, chairman and CEO of MedQuist, Dennis Mahoney, president and CEO of Lanier Healthcare

Base Technology – Products/Partnerships/Financial

Elan Speech Sees The Day - A new company for speech synthesis products already deployed worldwide:
Elan Speech (Toulouse, France) sees the day. Elan Informatique has been a global provider of text-to-speech technologies since 1986 and Elan Speech is a direct result of the team’s ambition to give a fresh dimension to the company by putting an end to a difficult situation caused by the Liquidation of its former shareholder (L&H). At present, Elan Speech has acquired all of Elan Informatique’s assets, thereby fully ensuring the transparent prolongation of business for its customers and partners. Elan Speech re-affirms its position as market leader with products deployed worldwide, by putting its development plan into operation and enhancing its presence on the American continent. Antoine Kauffeisen, was recently named Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, Antoine Kauffeisen, aged 40, joined Elan Informatique as General Sales Manager before being named Chief Operating Officer in 2001. He has a wide experience gained in the field of Information Technology, of which 7 years were spent working in Speech Technologies. Elan Speech is now preparing the ground for innovative technological solutions, including the Elan SAYSO technology, new languages and a strong partnership policy to better meet customer expectations (Telecom/Automotive/Multimedia/Mobile) as their attraction to Voice Interfaces is constantly growing. Voice Portals, web pages, unified messaging, talking PDA’s, intelligent automobiles or multimedia applications: for Carriers and Operators, Software developers, Integrators, The creation of Elan Speech, whose client base has reached over 350 companies worldwide, means they now have the perfect Text to speech partner. Investors in Elan Speech include PART’COM and IRDI. PART'COM is a pan European investor specialized in Telecommunications , Media and e-business sectors. PART'COM is backed by "PART'COM Management" who overlook 500 millions euros investment. IRDI ( Regional Institute of Industrial Development for the Midi-Pyrťnťes Region) is a regional capital investment company whose activities involve Venture Capital, Development and Transmission. They are endowed with 80 Million euros equity with 11 members including 6 investment professionals. IRDI invests approximately 20 M euros/year. Elan designs, develops and commercializes TTS technologies worldwide under licensing or OEM agreements in all fields of TTS applications (Telecommunications, multimedia, embedded systems and mobile solutions.) Elan Speech employs 40 people. Ccontact: Elan Speech, Caroline HouŽl - +33 (0)5 61 36 89 14

FONIX CORP - Financing Agreement: Fonix Corporation (OTC Bulletin Board: FONX) (Salt Lake City, UT), a provider of natural-user interface technology for wireless and mobile devices, Internet and telephony systems, and vehicle telematics, announced that it has entered into a new $20 million financing agreement to provide additional working capital for the company. The financing is structured as an equity line of credit, which allows Fonix to draw as needed desired amounts and put to the equity line investor shares of Fonix registered common stock in satisfaction of the draws. Fonix has filed a Form S-2 registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission to register 150 million shares to be available under the equity line. Contact: 801-553-6600.

LumenVox Announces Linux Supported Speech Recognition Engine v2.5: LumenVox (San Diego, CA) announces the availability of their Speech Recognition Engine (SRE) v2.5. This new version provides developers more flexibility by being compatible with both Linux and Windows platforms. With LumenVox SRE enterprises and service providers are given more operating platform choices with the inclusion of Linux. The SRE v2.5 now supports Windows 98, NT, 2000, XP Pro, and Linux Red Hat 7.2, with more versions of Linux being added in the future. Other improvements include improved word confidence values, faster out-of-vocabulary filters, as well as improved built-in grammars. LumenVox's SRE was designed to be easily integrated into any currently existing application. It has a low level API set, that recognizes audio data from any source. SRE grammars offer unprecedented flexibility and power. The recognition is order independent with an automatic out-of-vocabulary filter. The grammars are run-time defined with each grammar able to contain 2,000+ recognition words or phrases. Available built-in grammars handle digits, currency and natural numbers. The SRE will automatically produce pronunciation for any word not currently in the over 120,000 word dictionary. Contact: LumenVox LLC, San Diego, Chris Lotspeich, 858-707-0707, ext. 202,

Deborah Dahl of Unisys Leading World Wide Web Consortium's Multimodal Interaction Working Group: The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has appointed Dr. Deborah A. Dahl of Unisys Corporation (NYSE:UIS) to chair its newly formed Multimodal Interaction Activity Working Group. Established in February, the Working Group is chartered with defining industry standards for multimodal interaction, which may include developing new markup languages or adapting an existing markup language that allows developers to integrate voice and handwriting in a Web page for mobile or desktop devices. This will enable users to interact with an application in a variety of ways so that the total interaction is as natural and efficient as possible. A 17-year Unisys veteran, Dahl serves as project manager for the company's Voice and Business Mobilization Solutions for the Global Communications Industry group. Previously she was the manager of Advanced Development for the Unisys Natural Language practice and an active member of the W3C Voice Browser Group as well as chair of the Natural Language Semantics subgroup. She holds two U.S. patents for speech technology, has published more than 50 technical papers, and has spoken at many industry conferences. Dahl has completed postdoctoral work in cognitive science at the University of Pennsylvania and earned master's and doctorate degrees in Linguistics from the University of Minnesota. She graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Illinois. The W3C was created in October 1994 to develop common protocols that promote the Web evolution and ensure its interoperability. It has nearly 500 Member organizations from around the world and has earned international recognition for its contributions to the growth of the Web. W3C, contact Janet Daly, Contact: Unisys, Blue Bell, Gail Ferrari, 215-986-4321,

Nuance and ScanSoft Collaborate to Bring High-Quality RealSpeak Text-to-Speech to Nuance Customers: Nuance (Nasdaq: NUAN)(Menlo Park, CA) and ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT)(Peabody, MA) have joined forces to extend their reach in the worldwide telephony market by bringing together the best in Nuance's speech software and ScanSoft's text-to-speech (TTS) offerings. ScanSoft has made its RealSpeak TTS engine fully compatible with the Nuance Vocalizer Integration Framework. This integration provides Nuance customers access to ScanSoft's comprehensive TTS product offering, currently available in 19 languages. Nuance will promote ScanSoft's market-leading RealSpeak TTS to its customer base and will offer solutions providing the widest language support with the highest quality and densities. ScanSoft will support Nuance's worldwide sales team in its selling efforts as customers and channel partners expand their geographic opportunities. RealSpeak's support for Nuance Vocalizer also provides seamless integration between ScanSoft's text-to-speech engine with Nuance 8.0 speech recognition and Nuance Verifier 3.0 voice authentication software. ScanSoft RealSpeak is available in 19 languages and is used for a wide range of applications, including reading emails for unified messaging systems, providing voice prompts for interactive voice response (IVR) applications, and speech-enabling mobile, automotive, game and PC/multi-media applications. or call CONTACT: ScanSoft, Inc., Richard Mack, 978-977-2175, or Nuance, Gwen Murphy, 650-847-7131,

World Wide Web Consortium Publishes Speech Recognition Grammar Specification; Open Invitation to Test Critical Component of W3C Speech Interface Framework:, The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has issued the Speech Recognition Grammar Specification as a W3C Candidate Recommendation. Speech grammars allow voice-based application authors to create rules describing what users are expected to say after listening to each application prompt. Advancement of this document to Candidate Recommendation is a statement that the specification is stable, and an invitation to the Web development community at large to make further implementations and provide technical feedback. Talking and Listening to the Web Requires a Framework. The W3C Voice Browser Working Group is defining a suite of markup languages covering dialog (VoiceXML 2.0); speech synthesis (Speech Synthesis Markup Language); speech recognition (Speech Grammar, Stochastic Language Models, Semantic Interpretation for Speech Recognition, Natural Language Semantics); call control (Voice Browser Call Control: CCXML) and other aspects of interactive voice response applications. All of these contribute to the W3C Speech Interface Framework. The Speech Recognition Grammar specification is the first of the W3C Speech Interface Framework suite to be advanced to Candidate Recommendation status. Speech Grammars Provide XML Rules for Understanding Speech : Speech Grammars allow authors to specify rules covering the sequences of words that users are expected to say in particular contexts. The W3C Speech Recognition Grammar specification defines an XML language for context-free speech grammars. In more practical terms, Speech grammars make it easier to allow for variations in the way people answer questions. For example, people may say "Yes", "Sure", or "Fine", or may say dates as "Tomorrow", "July 8th" or "8 July". The Speech Recognition Grammar Specification provides an XML language for application authors to define rules covering all the expected combinations of words that users are likely to say in a given context. Because the set of rules are independent of any individual markup language, they may be used with versions of VoiceXML, or with other dialog markup languages. Implementers Encouraged to Further Build on Speech Interface Framework. W3C welcomes implementation reports for the Speech Grammar specification. The Implementation Report Plan provides an extensive set of test cases; there is already significant implementation experience amongst the companies involved in the W3C Voice Browser Working Group that developed the specification. W3C expects at least two interoperable implementations of each required feature in the specification as a condition on advancing it to Proposed Recommendation status. Leaders in Voice Industry Produce Speech Grammar Specification through W3C Consensus-Based Process: The W3C Voice Browser Working Group consists of W3C Members and invited experts who hold leadership roles in the development of Voice Interaction technologies. Those active in the Speech Grammars specification include BeVocal, Cisco Systems, Comverse, IBM, Locus Dialogue, Lucent, Microsoft, Nuance Communications, Openwave, Philips, PipeBeach, Scansoft, SpeechWorks International, Tellme Networks and Unisys. The W3C was created to lead the Web to its full potential by developing common protocols that promote its evolution and ensure its interoperability. It is an international industry consortium jointly run by the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science (MIT LCS) in the USA, the National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control (INRIA) in France and Keio University in Japan. Services provided by the Consortium include: a repository of information about the World Wide Web for developers and users, and various prototype and sample applications to demonstrate use of new technology. To date, nearly 500 organizations are Members of the Consortium. Contact: The World Wide Web Consortium, Americas, Australia -- Janet Daly, .617.253.5884 or .617.253.2613, Europe -- Marie-Claire Forgue, +33.492.38.75.94, OR Asia -- Saeko Takeuchi, +81.466.49.1170

Conferences/Market Reports

In-Stat/MDR "Talking to Dollars: Speech Recognition Market Overview, Segmentation, and Forecast: At 41 pages, this looks more like a long article than a serious market report. In-Stat claims revenue for the telephone ASR of $198 million in 2001(down from 2000) and they are projecting this to grow to $1,036 million by 2006. In-Stat didn’t appear to be certain if this was world-wide or not. The factors that are cited as fueling growth are the obvious ‘buzz’ ones (wireless growth, standards, technology improvement, regulatory, etc.). Market size appears to be grossly under-stated for 2001 with a ‘hockey stick’ (39.2% CAGR) through 2006. Reading an issue of a magazine such as Communications Convergence would be more informative and save $2,995. Contact: Brian Stachman, 480-483-4454, Kirstin Skedd,

Datamonitor Voice Portals and Applications report: Datamonitor has just introduced their latest report covering the speech technology-based industry (Voice Portals and Applications). Like most analysts, Datamonitor claims to offer an insight into the industry that is unique and offers specific recommendations that will enable market participants to succeed. The insights appear to be stating no more than what is obvious today and extrapolating this. The recommendations that are offered tend to be weakened by the "on-the-other-hand" orientation that is used by the analysts to cover all bets. For example, Datamonitor appears to be quite bullish about vertical specialization. The rationale for this is amateurish and suggests that Datamonitor does not really understand the dynamics of the marketplace. The primary value of vertical market specialization is that the vendor speaks the language of the customer. That the application provided by the vendor is superior to others may or may not be true. As often as not, I’ve found that the leading vendor in a particular vertical does not have the superior product. In any event, Datamonitor waters their vertical market bullishness down by recommending that vendors not specialize in a particular vertical market segment (since all they gain is this insignificant thing called ‘sales efficiency’), and should address numerous vertical market segments. The recent entry of large companies such as Sun Microsystems, Oracle, and Microsoft is heralded as something new and even good. Datamonitor has the telephony ASR market at $629 million in 2001 (down from $650 million in 2000) and growing to $4.33 million by 2007. The report is predicting 15% growth in 2002 (guess they believe that the 2nd half of 2002 will be spectacular) and then yearly growth exceeding 35% after 2002. The report has about 150 pages and the price of the report is $3,995. If you want a market report that is overstating 2001 by about 40% and projects a massive ‘hockey stick’ (37.9% CAGR), without much support for how this is going to happen (other than the well-known ‘buzz’), then this report is for you. Again, reading an industry magazine would seem to provide as much insight and cost much less. Contact: Gayle Birkelund, Marketing Director, 212-652-5303

Changing Places

ART Advanced Recognition Technologies, Inc., announces that Mr. Ran Mokady, entrepreneur and pioneer in the area of software for mobile devices, has been appointed to ART's Advisory Board. A recognized authority on mobile communications, Mr. Mokady brings over a decade of international expertise to ART’s leadership of the ever-expanding field of embedded speech and handwriting recognition solutions for mobile devices. Preferred Voice, Inc., said that its co-founder and Chairman of the Board, G. Ray Miller, has relinquished his duties as Chief Executive Officer. In his continuing role as Chairman, Miller will focus his energies on building strategic relationships and creating future generations of products and services for Preferred Voice. Bill Schereck, President and Chief Operating Officer, and Mary Merritt, Co-founder and Chief Financial Officer, will be responsible for the company's day to day operations. Tom Herring, former CEO of NuMega Technologies Inc., joins as Expresiv's chairman and CEO. Frank Reeves, formerly with publicly traded Luminex Corp., joins as Expresiv's chief financial officer and chief operating officer. The appointment of these executives is intended to further Expresiv's growth and the development of its advanced speech recognition applications, which are claimed to dramatically improve business processes for a variety of industries, including healthcare.




Q1, 2002

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Comverse Total Revenue






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General Magic Total Revenue






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Microlog Total Revenue






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Q-T-Q is showing some improvement.. compared to quarterly Y-T-Y, although it’s still apparent from these figures that a recovery is not yet in place.

The WorldCom fraud announcement should ultimately become a positive. We have too many carriers chasing too little business. WorldCom going bankrupt and its’ business being split among the surviving carriers should strenghten the positions of the survivors.



The Emperor is Naked

It’s Natural Speech, not Natural Language, Stupid! Much of call automation industry is heavily focused on improving the user interface which is certainly good. Unfortunately, virtually all of the effort is being directed at Natural Language and the result is that we are addressing the wrong part of the problem. The challenge that we have is getting more callers to use our automated call handling systems. The reality that we need to face is that most callers really don’t like to use automated call handling systems. Callers grudgingly have come to accept voice mail but this is simply because they don’t really have a choice. If you want to communicate with someone by phone - you better leave a voice message. Automated attendents are another matter. A large % of the callers opt for a live agent in a knee-jerk fashion. The result is that usage is extremely low. Sure - getting 10% of the callers to use it provides an ROI justification and we pat ourselves on the back for this ‘achievement’. With an appropriate interface for the caller, we should be at 90% trying to get to 98%. In the IVR area, the relatively modest success has been driven primarily by it being the lessor of two evils. When faced with a 15 minute ACD queue, with a likelihood of being rudely disconnected after 10 minutes, IVR becomes relatively attractive. Let us not kid ourselves - the perception that most callers have of an IVR system is not positive. We have had over 20 years of providing lousy interfaces to the caller. No matter how much we improve the caller interface with ASR and NL, the perception will continue. Changing user behavior is virtually an impossible challenge to overcome. Addressing the words that a caller is saying is a relatively small part of addressing the user interface challenge. Human beings communicate as much without words as they do with them. A relatively small part of interpersonal communication is expressed verbally and a much larger % is based on vocalizations other than words. Automated caller interfaces should be modeled on the conversation between a live operator and a caller.

A Natural Speech Interface offers a completely natural dialog, exactly as though the caller were communicating with a live operator. Yet, none of the existing call automation systems that I’ve seen do this. They even appear to go out of their way to not do this. With the first greeting prompt, the caller clearly recognizes that they are communicating with a machine and reacts in a knee-jerk fashion by zeroing out to a live agent.

The basic advantage of a natural speech interface is that you don’t lose callers up-front. During the dialog, a natural speech interface also works much better. The performance of a well-trained and experienced live operator is far superior to the theoretical/empirical approaches that are being applied. Precisely replicating what a good live operator does is a winner! Sure – I’ve heard the argument that some users actually prefer to ‘talk to a machine’ since they don’t feel guilty about wasting the time of a fellow human being. This may be true, but who cares? These folks are not our challenge. They like using the stuff and we already have given them. We even contrast Natural Language with Directed Dialog and suggest that Directed Dialog is bad. Yet virtually every ‘natural language’ implementation/demo that I’ve seen is a directed dialogue one, and not at all subtle. A dialogue with a competent live operator is highly directed, although it is typically done in a very subtle way.

We need to expand usage to the folks that are reluctant to use it. The reason for the existing industry orientation is obvious. We are a techie-driven industry. The technical challenges of natural language understanding are fascinating and the sort of thing that a technical person naturally gravitates towards. Unfortunately, this approach will never get us to really increase usage and ultimately real success.


Coming Speech Events

VOX2002: The Voice & Wireless Commerce Conference
San Francisco
July 22-24. 2002
609-921-7200 Ext. 33
Speech & Voice Application for Military & Government
Washington DC
July 30-31, 2002
World Research Group
SpeechTek 2002: The Voice & Wireless Commerce Conference
New York City
October 29- November 1, 2002
Chris Nolan

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ASRNews is published monthly by Voice Information Associates, Inc., P.O. Box 253, Concord, MA, 01742, USA, Voice. 978- 266-1966, Fax: 978-263-3461,, email, Walt Tetschner, Publisher and Editor. Subscription, annual: hard copy only, U.S. and Canada, $345, foreign, $395, Copyright 2001, ISSN 1051-4163. All rights reserved. Reproduction or photocopying is strictly prohibited without written permission. Voice Information Associates is an information services company specializing in the advanced speech technology industry.