Savings, Service to Speak Loudly
Cost savings and better customer service will drive businesses worldwide to invest $5.6 billion in voice recognition technology by 2006, up from $650 million this year, according to a study by Datamonitor plc. The worldwide investment in voice technologies was up 33 percent this month compared with the same month last year, the study said. Datamonitor, of London, also estimates that voice recognition technology will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 43 percent between last year and 2006.
The increase in spending is due to a shift from enabling technologies, including speech recognition and text-to-speech engines, toward applications and services. Those services include AOL Time Warner Inc.s AOLbyPhone service, General Motors Corp.s Onstar in-car services and Sprint PCS Groups voice-activated dialing.
Portals Must Open Up Lest They Shut Down
Excite has declared bankruptcy, and AltaVistas struggling. Still, worldwide multiaccess consumer portals are expected to generate $70 billion in revenue by 2006, according to Ovum Ltd., in London.
Competition will be intense. Ovum predicts that advertising revenue for portals will represent just 36 percent of overall revenue by 2006. In order to thrive, Ovum says portals must give users access from two or more methods or devices such as a PC, mobile phone, personal digital assistant or television.