[THE INVESTOR] Telecommunications firm KT said on Sept. 21 that it has partnered with Nuance Communications, a German company behind Apple’s mobile assistant Siri, to develop in-vehicle voice recognition solutions tailored for the Korean market.
Nuance is one of the leading speech recognition software developers, offering its solutions to global tech companies as well as automotive companies, including BMW, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai Motor and Toyota Motor.
Choi Kang-rim (left), head of KT’s connected car division, and Egon Jungheim, vice president of Nuance Communications
As their first joint project, the two companies will work to add Korean language support to the German software company’s voice recognition systems Dragon Drive and Just Talk. They will also make the solutions compatible with KT’s content platforms, including music streaming service Genie and artificial intelligence solution Giga Genie.
Dragon Drive is fitted in more than 200 million cars globally, and Just Talk allows users to utilize voice recognition-installed systems without pressing a button or saying a wake word.
“KT and Nuance will develop intuitive voice recognition systems to offer new digital experience in the Korean car market,” said Stefan Ortmanns, executive vice president of Nuance Communications’ automotive division.
The Korean telco is currently utilizing AI-fitted voice assistant Giga Genie for its services, including e-commerce, and the accumulated number of subscribers has exceeded 1 million.
Competition in the in-vehicle infotainment system market has recently been getting fiercer among telecom and mobile messenger companies.
Kakao Mobility, a spin-off of Korea’s largest mobile messenger company Kakao, recently launched a new version of its navigation service KakaoNavi that supports Apple’s automotive platform CarPlay.
Mobile carrier SK Telecom also plans to include support for Apple’s infotainment system in its navigation software T-Map, which has 16.6 million users -- the largest in the nation.