Nuance unveils voice-based virtual assistant

August 8, 2012 - 

Nuance Communications, Inc. has introduced a new virtual assistant called “Nina” in order to compete with other voice assistants like Siri and S-Voice.  Not only is “Nina” capable of understanding what is said, but the system can also differentiate amongst different voices.  That paves the way for the authentication of multiple voices for different functions on a single mobile device.

As a virtual assistant, “Nina” is designed to pay bills, arrange bank transfers, book a vacation or even interact with government services without entering a password.  Organizations can even customize “Nina” by changing its visual appearance and implementing optional custom voices.

Robert Weideman of Nuance Enterprise Division said: “Nina is a watershed innovation for the automated customer service industry, not only because it brings the virtual assistant directly into an app, but because it raises the bar through its level of interactive dialog and language understanding.  Nina provides our customers a major competitive differentiator by enabling more successful self-service through their mobile app to deliver a premier mobile customer service experience to its users.”

Nina is backed by Nuance’s open software development kit (SDK), which allows for rapid integration of virtual assistant capabilities into mobile apps for iOS and Android.   It has four components: binary APIs that provides access to core cloud services; source APIs that provides access to customize the persona and provide control of all modes of input including speech recognition, text to speech and touch dialogs; source code of Nina virtual assistant apps and functions; and, cloud services to deliver an interactive user experience.

Would you use a virtual assistant like Siri or Nina?

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About T'ash Spenser

T’ash Spencer writes full time for She has 15 years experience in the field of regional planning and earned her Master’s of Science in Regional Development Planning and Management from the University of Dortmund, Germany. Follow her @tashspencer1.