CSR adds text-to-speech to its BlueCore5-Multimedia platform

eXtension partner NowSpeak develops Mobile TTS for BlueCore

December 2006

CSR (LSE: CSR.L) has further expanded the capabilities of its BlueCore5-Multimedia platform with the addition of NowSpeak Technologies to CSR's eXtension Partner Programme. NowSpeak's Mobile TTS software for BlueCore has been developed to run on CSR's powerful Kalimba DSP, providing text-to-speech capabilities for Bluetooth headsets and in-car handsfree systems using CSR's BlueCore5-Multimedia silicon.

NowSpeak Mobile TTS for BlueCore represents a big step towards a fully handsfree approach to communication. When a call is received on the user's mobile phone, the name or phone number of the incoming caller is announced over the headset or car kit, allowing the user to decide whether or not they wish to accept the call. The TTS software automatically synthesises speech from the incoming text in real time, without the need to know the words in advance. This offers a significant advantage over pre-recorded speech systems which can only announce pre-defined words and phrases. Also, Mobile TTS technology offers voice prompts indicating the status of the Bluetooth device and instructions to improve usability.

"Our partnership with CSR is enabling us to move closer to our vision of putting Bluetooth devices at the centre of the user's digital experience, allowing personalised voice-driven universal remote control", explained Allan Davison, Commercial Director, NowSpeak Technologies Ltd. "We chose CSR's BlueCore platform because it has been selected for more than 80% of all headset designs, opening a huge and growing potential market for our technology."

BlueCore5-Multimedia is the only single-chip Bluetooth platform with a powerful 64 MIPS DSP and on-chip memory to support a host of third-party software for enhanced audio capability and expanded functionality to add increased value to mobile handsets, headsets and automotive handsfree systems.

The DSP-based platform also features enough power to support future software enhancements. Currently NowSpeak Mobile TTS for BlueCore offers caller ID, device status updates and an audio pairing guide in multiple languages including major European, North and South American and Mandarin. However, thanks to BlueCore5-Multimedia's untapped processing power, NowSpeak expects to add support for additional languages, SMS and email reading as well as speech recognition for name dialling and music control and selection.

Richard Ord, SVP of CSR's Wireless Audio strategic business unit (SBU) commented, "NowSpeak's text-to-speech capability, running on our market-proven multimedia architecture offers a level of added value to our automotive, handset and headset customers that simply cannot be matched. Our decision to pursue a DSP-based architecture for wireless audio applications allows us to offer outstanding audio performance to our customers through our eXtension partnerships and encourage the mass market adoption of Bluetooth for wireless audio applications."