Amazon to enhance Kindle Fire voice tech with IVONA acquisition | Mobile Industry | Mobile Entertainment

Amazon to enhance Kindle Fire voice tech with IVONA acquisition

IVONA Software
Zen Terrelonge

by

Industry / Mergers & Acquisitions / January 25th 2013 at 11:36AM

Prepares for a screaming match with Siri.

Apple's unveiling of virtual voice assistant Siri has seemingly encouraged rivals to step their respective speech games up. Samsung delivered S-Voice, China Mobile invested in Anhui USTC, Android Voice Search learned 13 new languages, and LG announced Quick Voice.

Amazon has now announced the purchase of text-to-speech speciality IVONA Software, the firm currently powering the Kindle Fire's voice features.

Aside from the online retailer-cum-tablet maker, IVONA also boasts product designs and services for thousands of global businesses and developers, and a portfolio of more than 44 voices in 17 languages.

Dave Limp, VP of Amazon Kindle, said: "IVONA’s exceptional text-to-speech technology leads the industry in natural voice quality, accuracy and ease of use. IVONA is already instrumental in helping us deliver excellent accessibility features on Kindle Fire, including Text-to-Speech, Voice Guide and Explore by Touch.

"The IVONA team shares our passion for innovation and customer obsession, and we look forward to building great products to deliver world-class voice solutions to customers around the world."

The IVONA takeover follows Amazon's November 2011 buyout of speech specialist Yap.