Apple may be negotiating deal with Nuance for iOS 5 speech recognition

“This past November, the blogosphere was briefly set on fire when a comment Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak made in passing stated that Apple had acquired the voice recognition company Nuance,” MG Siegler reports for TechCrunch.

“Wozniak quickly came out and corrected that comment, and most believed that he had simply confused Nuance with the company he mentioned right afterwards, Siri — a company that Apple actually did acquire in April 2010,” Siegler reports. “But as it turns out, Wozniak’s comment, whether he knew it or not at the time, may not have been as off as it seemed.”

Siegler reports, “Apple has been negotiating a deal with Nuance in recent months, we’ve heard from multiple sources. What does that mean? Well, it could mean an acquisition, but that is looking fairly unlikely at this point, we hear. More likely, it means a partnership that will be vital to both companies and could shape the future of iOS.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. I have no doubt that Siri technology will be integrated into iOS. Apple is forward thinking and they didn’t just buy Siri on a whim. That said, with iOS coming soon, Apple would have already had to negotiate some kind of Nuance deal. They wouldn’t wait until the last moment.

  2. The Dragon engine is seriously kick-ass and I would put acquiring it on par with acquiring TiVo in terms of awesomenesses. One thing that makes this unlikely: the company is freshly-acquired, so I’m thinking the company may be too overvalued now for Apple to move on it.

    Although it would be awesome.

  3. The iPhone is only incidentally a phone: Its primary function for most users is that of a portable computer. In recent years, advances in computing power and applications have gotten ahead of the device’s interface; selecting menu items and entering data by hand is so 20th century …

    Within a few years, iGlasses with a built-in heads-up display will provide a virtual monitor that will further improve the user experience. A generation from now, brain implants smaller than a freckle — already under development and tested successfully with monkeys — will further integrate the iPhone into the user’s life. Keyboards, touch-screen monitors, and other distractions will be a distant memory.

  4. Speech recognition would be fantastic. In combination with VoiceOver the device would be very powerful hands-free.

    There’s no way to use VoiceOver right now, without the dramatic iPhone UI control changes, is there?

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