Nuance Communications launches virtual assistant for mobile customer service apps

Telecom Lead India: Nuance Communications has launched
Nina, a virtual assistant for mobile customer service apps.

Nina enables companies to add speech-based virtual
assistant capabilities to their existing iOS and Android mobile apps.

The Nina Virtual Assistant SDK and cloud service is
available now in the U.S., U.K. and Australian English, with additional
languages to be made available later this year. Nuance provides professional
services in support of Nina and virtual assistant implementations.

Nina combines Nuance speech recognition, Text-to-Speech,
voice biometrics, and Natural Language Understanding technology hosted in the
cloud to deliver an interactive user experience that not only understands what
is said, but also can identify who is saying it.

USAA, a financial services provider that serves members
of the U.S. military, veterans and their families, has adopted the virtual
assistant for use within its popular mobile app. A pilot is planned for August
and the functionality will launch to all USAA members early next year.

Neff Hudson, assistant vice president of emerging
channels for USAA, said USAA’s solutions are designed to make life easier for
its military service members, and increasingly for all members who now expect
to get things done when, where and how they want.

Nuance claims that Nina is the first virtual assistant
for mobile customer service apps to incorporate both speech recognition and
voice biometrics into a single integrated solution. Nina provides an open
software development kit (SDK) to support the rapid integration of virtual assistant
capabilities into existing mobile applications. In addition, Nina is the first
to allow organizations to brand their own virtual assistant persona, including
the visual appearance and implementation of optional custom TTS voices.

Robert Weideman, executive vice president and general
manager of the 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.

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