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Envox Worldwide Achieves VoiceXML 2.0 Certification
Envox Worldwide, a provider of voice solutions, has announced that the company's open, standards-based communications development platform, Envox 6, has achieved VoiceXML 2.0 certification through the VoiceXML Forum's Platform Certification Program. VoiceXML has become an important standard for enterprise customers and service providers developing IVR, enhanced self-service and other voice solutions because it simplifies the integration of these voice solutions with IT infrastructures based on Web technologies and open standards. As more customers rely on VoiceXML to lower the cost of deploying and maintaining voice solutions, and as the VoiceXML standard continues to evolve, platform certification by the leading VoiceXML industry body becomes increasingly important to ensure that the interoperability benefits of VoiceXML are realized. With its VoiceXML 2.0 certification, Envox 6 provides developers and IT managers alike with the assurance that their voice solutions can be easily integrated with their IT infrastructure, allowing them to take full advantage of the VoiceXML standard. Envox 6 is an open, standards-based communications development platform with integrated application development and management components that aim to reduce the time, cost and complexity of creating voice solutions. Envox 6 provides a bridge between legacy systems and new voice solutions, allowing customers to leverage prior investments in hardware, software and solution development, while providing a smooth migration path to emerging standards and enabling technologies. Using Envox 6, developers can create a wide range of voice solutions through 'unmatched' flexibility and broad support for these emerging standards and technologies, including VoiceXML, speech recognition, VoIP and Web services. Envox 6 is tightly integrated with Envox 6 VoiceXML Studio to create a complete VoiceXML offering. Developers using Envox 6 VoiceXML Studio in combination with the Envox 6 platform gain the following capabilities:

' Additional development functions not included in the VoiceXML 2.0 specification, including integration with e-mail, Web and fax systems; access to advanced call control functions such as conferencing, fax, PBX integration, ISDN signaling, ANI and DNIS-based actions, and intelligent routing; and extensive integration options for databases, Web services, enterprise applications and legacy systems.
' A bridge between legacy systems and new VoiceXML-based solutions, allowing companies to leverage prior investments in hardware, software and solution development.'
' Seamless support for speech and telephony resources from ScanSoft, Nuance, Intel and others.
' A highly scalable, reliable and fault-tolerant VoiceXML gateway.
' The ability to deploy solutions in a wide range of telephony environments, including analog, digital, VoIP, SS7 and more.

Management capabilities can reduce the time and cost of administrating large-scale installations. The Envox 6 certification test report can be accessed at http://www.voicexml.org/platform_certification/envox/envox_ctr.html.

Genesys Announces IP-Enabled Voice Platform
Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories Inc., an Alcatel company, has announced an IP-enabled version of the Genesys Voice Platform "to serve enterprise customers of all sizes," according to Genesys officials. The new offering is available now. The introduction of the new IP-enabled enterprise edition of GVP is part of Genesys' strategy to expand IP capabilities throughout the Genesys Voice Platform product portfolio. One feature that's key in marketing the GVP to enterprises actively considering migrating to IP is that the product has been designed to help them do so without an extensive system overhaul. The new IP-enabled version of GVP allows for time-division multiplexing (TDM) and IP to coexist within the same environment. Existing TDM-based environments limit the return on investment on contact center software due to the inherent complexities and high cost of ownership at the infrastructure level. Genesys is hoping its adoption of an Open IP approach will convince enterprise customers that they can increase their ROI. "Enterprise customers that are actively moving forward with IP initiatives will find value in the self-service and ROI deliverables of the IP-enabled Genesys Voice Platform," said Elliot Danziger, chief technology officer of Genesys. Danziger further said the new offering will be presented as a flexible IP migration tool to enterprises. The GVP supports open standards, such as VoiceXML 2.0 and Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), and migration isn't rip and replace, but a phased approach. 'The transition to IP will not require a drastic cutover, as the GVP TDM and IP versions can coexist within the same environment, allowing for customer choice for [VoIP] infrastructures,' officials say.

Definition Du Jour
The "Say-As" Element The say-as element is an indicator inserted into speech code to help TTS (text-to-speech) engines pronounce words correctly from the written text by helping resolve ambiguities in the meaning of that text. For instance, if the TTS engine encounters .37, the say-as element will instruct the engine to pronounce it as its intended meaning, "thirty seven cents" rather than "point three seven." The say-as element is particularly important when the TTS engine is encountering dates, times, currency amounts, addresses and telephone numbers, all instances when the engine may become confused as to how to properly 'speak' the information. It also comes into play when the TTS engine encounters acronyms that may be either spoken as a word itself (NASA as opposed to the individual letters spoken N-A-S-A), or those acronyms for which individual letters are pronounced (like RSVP, which the system might otherwise attempt to sound out "risvip" without proper pronunciation instructions).

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