A new hands-free vehicle telecommunication system could let some Honda drivers check and respond to E-mail, just by raising their voice.
Japan’s Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. and Honda Research and Development Co. say they’ve combined their technologies to create a voice activated vehicle information system.
A key goal of NTT and Honda’s new system is to minimise driver distraction. The system relies on E-mail management software to prioritise and summarise messages. The system can send the driver and the person on the other end of the connection an alert that the call might be interrupted when the vehicle approaches a sharp curve or ends up in other hazardous driving conditions.
The in-car system uses voice-recognition and voice-synthesis applications to access a telecommunications network of voice and Internet data. VoiceRex, the voice-recognition software developed by NTT Research Center, identifies talkers and adapts to surrounding noises; FinalFluent, the voice-synthesis engine, uses about 60,000 types of vocal fragments to produce a high-quality natural tone when reading data requested by the driver.