December 29, 2005 8:45 AM PST

Voice control coming to XM radio

XM Satellite Radio and VoiceBox Technologies announced a multiyear alliance Thursday to bring voice control to the satellite broadcast service.

The partnership will let drivers issue voice commands to search through XM Satellite Radio's 160 channels of music, talk radio and other stations and to find personalized information such as stock prices, traffic and weather. The technology is planned to be available to automakers and to those producing aftermarket products in mid-2006, the companies said.

The companies will demonstrate the technology at the Consumer Electronics show next week.

XM competes with conventional broadcast radio and with another satellite-based subscription service, Sirius Satellite Radio.

This week, Sirius announced it has accumulated 3 million subscribers. XM has more than 5 million subscribers.

Jupiter Research estimates 55 million satellite radios will be sold in 2010.

XM announced that it had chosen VoiceBox's technology because it worked accurately in noisy environments. The technology is designed to let users control electronics with free-form conversational language, the companies said.

On Wednesday, XM announced it will use technology from Neural Audio to broadcast some digital radio signals using 5.1 surround sound, which employs five speakers and a low-frequency subwoofer instead of the conventional two speakers.

Denon, Onkyo, Pioneer, and Yamaha will introduce home audio systems that support the feature, which XM calls XM HD Surround. XM will demonstrate the technology at the electronics show.

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Audio mining using Compure technology?
When will we be able to use audio mining functionalities ACTNow offers ( to search for any words or phrases in stored broadcast news? The technology is there so you can simply say what you are interested in and it offers (via voice or screen) the movies that contain these words (Google-like search).
Posted by Peter Halmos (5 comments )
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