Nuance confirms its voice technology is behind Apple's Siri

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
It was long suspected, and now Nuance has confirmed that their technology is indeed present in Siri, the digital assistant available on Apple's iOS devices.

siri


Nuance, a leader in digital speech recognition, has long been thought to have contributed technology to Apple's digital assistant, though neither company had confirmed that until today. Speaking at AllThingsD's D11 conference, Nuance CEO Paul Ricci finally confirmed that Nuance's technology is in fact a part of Apple's Siri.

"We are the fundamental provider of voice recognition for Apple," Ricci admitted when asked whether Nuance was to blame when Siri doesn't understand requests.

Ricci explained that Nuance does not handle Siri's artificial intelligence layers, only the voice recognition. Further, Ricci said that Siri has both embedded and cloud technology for voice recognition, but that the feature is overall a cloud solution.

Ricci went on to note that Nuance doesn't do voice recognition only for Apple. In addition to the company's own Dragon dictation software, Nuance works with Samsung ? presumably on that company's S-Voice Siri competitor ? and other companies to develop voice applications on Android.

Nuance, however, is not involved with Google's speech-recognition effort, Google Now. That feature ? recently brought to iOS and even more recently named in a Siri patent suit ? is thought to have largely derived from Google's own voice recognition efforts and voice services.

Ricci went on to describe the future of voice recognition in technology. The next two years, Ricci says, will see virtual assistants becoming much more robust and working across platforms.

"The real problem," Ricci said, "is creating a virtual assistant that can understand what the user wants and take action based on anticipating those needs."

Apple unveiled Siri with the release of the iPhone 4S, sending many of its competitors scrambling to develop a similar feature. Many of the larger Android manufacturers have done so in the time since, and Google Now has picked up much of the slack for those who haven't.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 43
    gqbgqb Posts: 1,934member


    I'm not normally a fan of 'duh' comments, but...


     


    Duh?

  • Reply 2 of 43
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member


    Well… yeah?

  • Reply 3 of 43
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,484member
    Why didn't Apple buy Nuance?
  • Reply 4 of 43
    macvictamacvicta Posts: 346member


    Buy Nuance.


     


    Buy Liquidmetal Technologies.


     


    Buy Square.


     


    Buy Foursquare.


     


    And let the good times roll.

  • Reply 5 of 43
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,191member
    Considering the quality of Google's voice recognition, I'd say Nuance (as Siri) is no longer the leader in this area.

    Apple should consider making some defensive acquisitions in all of their key areas, some as noted by Macvicta above.
  • Reply 6 of 43
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 4,599member


    Nuance is the largest holder of Voice Recognition IP, over the years they bough most of the competitors. Also Mototorol swipe technology for typing is based on Nuance technology. Yeah apple could have bought them for the IP, but Nuance has licensed most of it IP to everyone, not sure that is something Apple wants to deal with. Most of Nuance revenue comes from their licensing agreements. 


     


    When I hear that Apple was being sued over Siri it was kind of interesting since we all believe it was Nuance IP behind most all of it. Not sure how google can get around all the Nuance IP to come up with their own solutions.

  • Reply 7 of 43
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 19,223member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MacVicta View Post


    Buy Nuance.


     


    Buy Liquidmetal Technologies.


     


    Buy Square.


     


    Buy Foursquare.



    All excellent suggestions.


     


    Apple should do this yesterday.

  • Reply 8 of 43
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member


    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

    All excellent suggestions.


     


    Apple should do this yesterday.



     


    Since they've purchased eight companies since October… and we don't know which they are… maybe they have!

  • Reply 9 of 43

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    All excellent suggestions.


     


    Apple should do this yesterday.



    Right, because Apple can just up and buy any public company they want.  Oh wait...

  • Reply 10 of 43
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Applelunatic View Post




    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    All excellent suggestions.


     


    Apple should do this yesterday.



    Right, because Apple can just up and buy any public company they want.  Oh wait...



    Yep. Current market cap for Nuance NUAN is 6.2 B. For a hostile takeover they would likely need to double that.


  • Reply 11 of 43
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,191member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    Since they've purchased eight companies since October… and we don't know which they are… maybe they have!



     


    For their master stroke, they should use $40 billion in cash to short GOOG stock, then perform a leveraged buyout of the company.

  • Reply 12 of 43
    robin huberrobin huber Posts: 3,269member
    Considering the quality of Google's voice recognition, I'd say Nuance (as Siri) is no longer the leader in this area.

    It pains me to admit it, but Google's app on iOS is better than voice search on Safari. Apple has tendency to jump out in front and then get complacent, allowing others to quickly build on it's success and surpass them.
  • Reply 13 of 43
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    For their master stroke, they should use $40 billion in cash to short GOOG stock, then perform a leveraged buyout of the company.



    Shorting a stock that has been on a tear all year is probably not the best idea in the world and Apple doesn't do debt so an LBO of anything is pretty unlikely.

  • Reply 14 of 43

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    Yep. Current market cap for Nuance NUAN is 6.2 B. For a hostile takeover they would likely need to double that.



    That you posted that without laughing at yourself is hilarious. That is not how acquiring another public company works. You don't just go "hurr hurr I buying you!".

  • Reply 15 of 43
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Applelunatic View Post


    That you posted that without laughing at yourself is hilarious. That is not how acquiring another public company works. You don't just go "hurr hurr I buying you!".



    Ok you explain how it's done.


     


    I'm using this info as a working model:


     


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Takeover#Hostile_takeovers

  • Reply 16 of 43
    ochymingochyming Posts: 474member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post





    It pains me to admit it, but Google's app on iOS is better than voice search on Safari. Apple has tendency to jump out in front and then get complacent, allowing others to quickly build on it's success and surpass them.


     


     


    Really?


     


    When did Apple get complacent and as result got behind?

  • Reply 17 of 43
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    gqb wrote: »
    I'm not normally a fan of 'duh' comments, but...

    Duh?

    Was this really never confirmed? I feel it was known if not directly stated from either company since Siri used Nuance.

    Considering the quality of Google's voice recognition, I'd say Nuance (as Siri) is no longer the leader in this area.

    Apple should consider making some defensive acquisitions in all of their key areas, some as noted by Macvicta above.

    Is this the Nuance speech-to-text part of the system or the Siri-part of the system that can intelligently analyze how to interpret the data after it's been processed past its waveform? In the latter area Google had a huge head start over Apple, and probably even Siri.
  • Reply 18 of 43
    ingelaingela Posts: 217member
    Google Now is pretty great. I rarely if ever use it, but it works great. Incredibly fast.
  • Reply 19 of 43

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    Ok explain how it's done.



    The company tenders an offer to purchase all outstanding shares. There is then a vote amongst shareholders to either accept or reject the offer. If a majority agrees then the company is sold.


     


    And for a company such as Nuance which has something like 93% institutional ownership it is highly unlike you're going to be able to buy a majority stake from shares being sold on the market. So your idea of a hostile takeover is mostly a pipe dream. You do realize you can only buy shares of the stock that someone is putting up for sale, right? You don't just say "I'm buying 51% of this company" and poof you own those shares.

  • Reply 20 of 43
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Applelunatic View Post





    The company tenders an offer to purchase all outstanding shares. There is then a vote amongst shareholders to either accept or reject the offer. If a majority agrees then the company is sold.


     


    And for a company such as Nuance which has something like 93% institutional ownership it is highly unlike you're going to be able to buy a majority stake from shares being sold on the market. So your idea of a hostile takeover is mostly a pipe dream. You do realize you can only buy shares of the stock that someone is putting up for sale, right? You don't just say "I'm buying 51% of this company" and poof you own those shares.



    You are describing a tender offer which not really a hostile takeover that I referred to in my original comment. Who knows if Nuance would accept a tender offer but if they would not then the suitor moves on to more hostile techniques of which there are a number of that could be tried.

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