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SpinVox and Telstra combine to deliver a winning service

Merri Mack

SpinVox, a voice to text conversion service company, was launched in the APAC region yesterday in Sydney with a Tier 1 telco signed up to deliver it services to its clients.

Telstra is ready to launch its Voice2Text service based on the SpinVox text conversion system this month. Subscribers to the Voice2Text service will have their voice messages sent as a text message to their mobiles, letting them read voicemail messages, as well as listen to them. The service from SpinVox is the first of its kind and is delivered as a managed service from SpinVox's servers in the UK.

SpinVox patented the technology before even forming the company and its founder, Daniel Doulton said, "We do expect that other vendors will try and copy the technology but we believe we are at least four years ahead of any potential competitors."

Meanwhile, Tier 1 carriers Vodafone Spain, Vodacom in South Africa and now Telstra are delivering the service to its customers. The take-up has been rapid with a potential market of 1.3 billion voice mails converted to text by the end of 2008. Carriers in the North American market include: Alltel, Rogers, Cincinnati Bell and Sasktel.

Doulton predicts SpinVox will be servicing 6 million subscribers by the end of Q1 in 2008 with 30 million by the end of 2008.

It was tested over 50 million transactions with three million different speakers. So far it is in four languages with all derivatives of English, Spanish, German and French

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and the company is working on a Mandarin and Hindi version so it can enter the lucrative Chinese and Indian markets.

Voice2Text subscribers will also see the caller ID on messages so they can see at a glance who left the message, and then call or text back straight away.

Telstra executive director of Wireless and Mobility Products, Roberto Vannini, said, "Telstra is the first in Australia to offer this type of speech conversion service and our customer trials have shown great levels of conversion quality and effectiveness."

At the heart of the SpinVox service is its Voice Message Conversion System (VMCS), which works by combining computer-based, state-of-the-art speech technologies with a live-learning language process.

Business customers will have the choice of three pricing options: $10 for 25 messages, $20 for 80 messages or pay as you go at 55 cents per message.

Demonstrated at the launch of the SpinVox in Australia, conversion works in under three minutes. Perceived accuracy is 97% and the audio is always available if necessary.