Companies Get a New Voice With Microsoft Speech Server

NEW YORK — Aug. 2, 2005 — At the annual SpeechTEK Exposition and Educational Conference in New York, Microsoft Corp. today announced that multiple companies have chosen Microsoft® Speech Server (MSS) as their platform of choice for building and deploying speech-enabled enterprise solutions, signifying growing adoption and demand by enterprise companies for a lower-cost scalable speech solution built on .NET Framework- and Windows®-based infrastructure. Companies from a variety of leading industry verticals, including finance, retail, healthcare and government, will deploy MSS in the coming months, expanding the MSS customer list to more than 60 companies that have invested in the platform. Most recently, Fingerhut; King Pharmaceuticals Inc.; Sandia National Laboratories; and the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles chose MSS for their enterprise speech solutions.

“These customer wins are a strong validation that Microsoft Speech Server is an enterprise-ready product in high-end call center implementations as well as a catalyst for opening up a variety of new speech-enabled applications such as driver’s-license renewal, password reset and employee productivity solutions,” said Rich Bray, general manager of the Speech Server group at Microsoft.

Microsoft also announced today that as part of its continued efforts to help make speech mainstream, it is expanding its speech technology efforts beyond the call center and interactive voice response markets into the broader enterprise unified messaging market by integrating speech technologies into a future release of Microsoft Exchange Server.

“We’re very excited about this partnership with Exchange and believe that offering speech-enabled unified messaging capabilities to the millions of Exchange users will go a long way to help achieve the goal of driving speech mainstream,” Bray said.

Launched in May, MSS 2004 R2 is built on .NET technologies and is the first product in its class to allow companies to deploy telephony-only DTMF (dual-tone multifrequency, or touch-tone keypad) applications, speech-enabled telephony applications, and multimodal (mixed speech and visual) applications. MSS 2004 R2 also provides enterprise customers with language support for U.S. Spanish and Canadian French at no additional cost and provides the option of an all-in-one server configuration, which gives those customers greater flexibility when choosing a deployment option.

Part of the Windows Server System™, MSS is a Web-based, speech-enabled interactive voice response and multimodal application solutions platform. As a Speech Application Language Tags (SALT)-based solution, Speech Server follows the Web application deployment model, using an ASP.NET-based Web server as the application server. The two main components of the MSS platform are the Telephony Application Services (TAS) and Speech Engine Services (SES), which include Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), Text-to-Speech (TTS) and prompt manager. Customers can also benefit from expanded telephony boards coverage and voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) support for MSS 2004 R2 from industry partners such as Aculab, Brooktrout Inc., Eicon Networks Corp. and Vail Systems Inc. More information about Microsoft Speech Server can be found at

About Windows Server System

Microsoft Windows Server System is integrated server software providing the infrastructure for IT operations, application development, integration and information work. Built on the Windows Server™ operating system and designed with Common Engineering Criteria, Windows Server System is focused on making it easier for IT professionals to connect and manage their IT environments. Because Windows Server System products are integrated for enhanced manageability and security, they help organizations reduce complexity and lower costs. All Windows Server System products support open industry standards including those based on XML to promote interoperability with other platforms. More information on Windows Server System can be found online at

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