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CES Feature Articles

January 06, 2009

Voice Recognition for Your Home

Voice recognition technologies are becoming more and more poplar these days for their ability to automate systems, increase productivity and even ease the completion of tasks.
While these technologies have already proven their effectiveness in call centers, and for mobile and in-car devices, one place, the home – is now also taking advantage of voice recognition's benefits.
Amulet Devices is introducing a voice-enabled remote control that will make it easier to watch and record media in the home using one's voice.

The new Amulet Remote is designed to work with Vista Media Center and is a replacement for the standard Media Center remote.
“Speech recognition technology has finally achieved the level of accuracy needed for use in the home. With the Amulet voice-activated remote control, we are the first company in the world to bring this exciting new capability to the consumer market through our unique combination of dedicated hardware and software,” said Steve Collins, Director of Engineering.

Aside from making it far easier to record and watch TV or listen to music and view DVDs and photos, the new remote recognizes voice commands and eliminates the need for multiple remotes in the home.
And as the number of digital TV channels being offered by provider's increases, it has become even more difficult to locate programs or find channels. Using one's voice they can simply say, "Find channel Cinemax" to be taken to that channel.

In order to sense that the remote is receiving a command, a built-in microphone transmits the user's voice to the Amulet software in Media Center to instruct it of the requested action. The company notes that the remote also includes an advanced position sensing technology so it only listens in when it is commanded, and not to other conversations.
Also, as personal music libraries increase, finding the right song can mean having to sift through albums and tracks. With the new voice enabled remote, all that’s need is for the user to name the artist or song. Also, if a song is being played and the user is unaware of who it is by, a synthesized voice is able to speak back to the command, "Name that tune" to find to the name of what is playing.
Scheduled to ship in March 2009, the Amulet remote can also operate as a traditional remote control and includes buttons, so if needed, users carry out tasks the traditional way as well.

Stefania Viscusi is an assignment editor for TMCnet, covering VoIP, CRM, call center and wireless technologies. To read more of Stefania’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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