Microsoft Acquires Unveil Technologies

Company enhances its call center application development capabilities with Unveil's speech-enabled voice response application.

With the goal of enhancing its call center application development capabilities, Microsoft announced Thursday a technology acquisition from Unveil Technologies.

The terms of the deal were undisclosed, but Microsoft Corp. in addition to the technology buy, it also plans to retain key developers from Unveil Technologies Inc. The Unveil engineers will become part of Microsofts Speech Server platform group.

Microsoft, of Redmond, Wash., plans to integrate Unveils Adaptive Learning and Conversation Assist components into the Speech Server platform, essentially a speech-enabled interactive voice response application platform. Speech Server brings to the table components that enable automatic speech recognition and text-to-speech capabilities.

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What Unveils technology will add is learn-by-example and agent assist technologies that let users – primarily companies with large customer call centers--more easily develop speech recognition applications.

"Unveils technology is a natural fit with Speech Server because it is in line with our vision of making speech applications affordable and easy to develop and maintain," said Rich Bray, general manager of the Speech Server group at Microsoft, in a statement. "By supplementing our toolset with Conversation Suite technologies, even a non-technical call-center manager can prototype and develop robust speech applications."

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