Cerence introduces custom voice tech for in-car assistants

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 31 Dec 2019

Cerence, a US-based automotive technology solution provider, has introduced the voice clone technology for in-car voice assistants. The product is called 'My Car My Voice' and Cerence claims that it lets people create custom voices for their in-car assistants. The company recently spun out from Nuance. Cerence focuses completely on the automotive industry

‘My Car My Voice’ comes with a set of predetermined voice options and Cerence claims that through this people can quickly and easily create a carbon copy of their own voice or that of a family member or friend to be the persona of the voice assistant in their cars that can be used to give directions, read messages and provide updates. Not only does this create a more human-like experience in the car, but also enhances safety – when the car is delivering notifications or information, the voice of a loved one can generate a more attentive or urgent response from a driver than a generic voice.

Sanjay Dhawan, CEO, Cerence said, “Cerence My Car My Voice takes the experience to a whole new level – imagine having your spouse, partner, best friend or other family members as the voice within your car. We’re delighted to introduce this innovation to our customers and their drivers, bringing a bit more humanity and spirit to their journeys.” Hear Sanjay's quote in his clone voice in the following video.

Cerence claims that ‘My Car My Voice’ uses cutting edge deep neural nets and text-to-speech (TTS) technologies which can process, clone and add custom voices to an automotive assistant’s voice library. To create a voice clone, a person simply records a series of short sentences using a mobile app that guides the user through the recording, allowing for corrections or pauses as needed. The system can also account for uneven volume of recording or other inconsistencies. In addition to creating and using their own original voice, people can also choose other versions of the voice assistant that are more sensible or humorous, making interaction with the voice assistant more interesting and fun.

Zhang Liang, Chief Digital Officer of SAIC Motor Passenger Vehicle said, “One of the important features of the new generation of connected vehicles is to realize the comprehensive upgrade of functions, services and experiences. Through the voice clone technology in the car, the personalised holographic voice applied to the intelligent cockpit system will make your communication with the car more natural and cordial.”

Reportedly, Cerence has over 21 offices worldwide and has tied up with over 60 auto brands. Citing the reason for the spin-off from Nuance, Sanjay had said, "The ability to focus solely on the automotive market will be hugely beneficial in achieving the next level of technological innovation in this space. With our new, hyper-focused vision, we’ll not only be able to meet the most ambitious consumer expectations but also challenge the industry as a whole to redefine the immersive driver experience."

Also read: Geely’s digital cockpit to be based on Nuance’s AI platform

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Nuance’s conversational AI platform to power Daimler’s in-car multimedia system