VoiceXML Forum Issues Version 1.0 of New Markup Language for Voice Internet Access

LOS ANGELES, COMPUTER TELEPHONY EXPO 2000, Mar. 7, 2000 — The VoiceXML Forum today announced it has completed the VoiceXML 1.0 specification, which is expected to expand the reach of the Internet by providing voice access to content and services. The Forum membership, which now numbers 79 companies, is reviewing the specification before it is submitted to the appropriate body for formal standardization.

Based on the World Wide Web Consortium’s industry-standard eXtensible Markup Language (XML), Version 1.0 of the VoiceXML specification provides a high-level programming interface to speech and telephony resources for application developers, service providers and equipment manufacturers. Standardization of VoiceXML will:

  • Simplify creation and delivery of Web-based, personalized interactive voice-response services;
  • Enable phone and voice access to integrated call center databases, information and services on Web sites, and company intranets; and
  • Help enable new voice-capable devices and appliances.

On the basis of the 0.9 version of the specification released last year, many companies have already begun implementing VoiceXML in their products and services, and a market for third-party VoiceXML application development has begun to emerge. The 1.0 version of the specification, currently being reviewed by Forum members, is now available to the public on the Forum’s Web site at http://www.voicexml.org.

"The telephone network has long had the potential to grow in information services and automated commerce like the Internet, but the difficulty of integrating them with quality voice services has prevented it from doing so," said William S. Meisel, president of TMA Associates, publisher/editor of the Speech Recognition Update newsletter and one of the speech technology industry’s best-known independent analysts and consultants. "VoiceXML is a key component in letting telephone speech recognition and the Voice Web grow in Internet time."

The VoiceXML 1.0 specification is based on years of research and development at AT&T, IBM, Lucent Technologies and Motorola, as well as comments from Forum members.

Another 18 companies have joined the VoiceXML Forum as supporters since the 0.9 specification was issued, including Brooktrout Software; Cisco Systems; ConApps; Gold Systems, Inc.; Indicast Corporation; Intraco Systems; IP Unity; ITT Industries; Net Technologies, Inc.; Nokia Corporation; Oki Electric Company, Ltd.; Onebox.com; PipeBeach AB; S-Link Corporation; Spyglass, Inc.; SS8 Networks, Inc.; Vail Systems, Inc.; and Voyant Technologies, Inc.

A number of VoiceXML Forum members are exhibiting this week at CT Expo, the world’s largest trade show for providers and users of computer-telephony equipment, services, software and solutions

The objective of the VoiceXML Forum is to expand Internet access through telephones and other devices using both speech and ordinary touch-tone user interfaces.

The Forum recently engaged the management services of the IEEE Industry Standards and Technology Organization to facilitate its day-to-day activities. For further information, visit the Forum’s Web site (http://www.voicexml.org) or call 732-465-6464.

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