Speech recognition pioneer Novauris purchased by Apple; team now works on Siri

“Apple quietly acquired an automatic speech recognition (ASR) technology company called Novauris Technologies, which grew out of Dragon Systems R&D U.K. Ltd., the British research subsidiary of Dragon Systems, a well-known voice dictation pioneer,” Sarah Perez reports for TechCrunch.

“The acquisition apparently took place last year, but had not been announced. At Apple as of last fall, the team is now working on improving Siri, the speech-based virtual assistant technology that comes pre-installed on Apple’s mobile devices,” Perez reports. “We reached out to Apple for comment. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.”

“The Novauris website doesn’t make any note of the Apple acquisition, but when we rang their U.K. offices, Novauris co-founder Melvyn Hunt answered the phone, ‘Apple,'” Perez reports. “He confirmed that he and the team now work for Apple, and that Novauris itself is no longer an active entity.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

12 Comments

  1. Speak softly & carry a big stick $$$$$ what has Gaggle done for investors lately? Burned through BILLIONS, now a stock split that relegates holders yo no voting rights. Um yeah… And you ignoramus investors TRUST this company WHY exactly?

  2. I used Siri in my rental Toyota Highlander last week in Reno. My iPhone 5 synced with the car perfectly, and Siri worked flawlessly giving turn by turn voice directions all over the area. The only issue we had was when we once ran out of cell coverage in the mountains.

    1. Funny, I was given to understand that Siri would have guided you over a cliff to your doom. I really must learn to refrain from the rutting in the Android forums….

      1. We visited a dozen destinations we’d never been to before and Siri directed us straight to them through the car stereo system (She kept discreetly interrupting the Bandenburg with turn by turn instructions.) to each of them. Siri also found several gluten free restaurants and bakeries for my wife.

        The only minor hiccup we had was our fault. We were looking for a business on Caughlin Road. Siri kept finding routes to “Collin” Road, which we thought was an error. Later on we discovered that the locals pronounce Caughlin Road as “Collin” Road. Our bad, not Siri’s.

            1. “Life in the Fast Lane”, and “Sympathy for the Devil” are both great pieces of driving music too, but for a different kind of driving.

        1. By the way, it may be because of the football coach Tom Coughlin (alt. sp. Caughlin) that you vocalised the silent gutturals. Am I right? I can’t know why his family left off the Irish pronunciation, so mellifluous.

  3. I wish Siri turn-by-turn would fade-pause in the Podcast app instead of fade-keep-playing. It is annoying to have to keep rewinding every time Siri gives me directions.
    Still love and use Apple’s maps on my iPhone every day, but unfortunately I now turn the Siri voice off when listening to podcasts.

    1. Playing through your car’s sound system, or just from your phone? Car sound systems have a ways to go before they are really iPhone compatible. That Toyota started my iPhone playing via Bluetooth every time I started the engine, and I couldn’t find a way to disable that “option”.

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