Opera Software ASA has announced their voice-enabled Electronic Program Guide (EPG) for home media. The company sees the voice-enabled EPG as a significant breakthrough in the effort to enhance the customer experience.
The EPG for home media introduces an easier way for people to interact with their DVD players, DVRs and digital TV set top boxes without having to negotiate an array of remote controls.
A differentiating benefit for consumers, the voice-enabled EPG helps make navigating complex data structures easy by using simple voice commands. For example, with the increasingly daunting number of television channels available, sorting through information and channel navigation can be done without effort by talking to your set top box.
Opera's voice-enabled EPG announcement was made just weeks before Opera rolls out their new voice-enabled edition of the Opera browser for PCs.
The voice-enabled EPG is written in XHTML+Voice or X+V multimodal programming language and is available in English with initial targets aimed at enterprise customers and developers.
Opera's Software Development Kit is based on the IBM WebSphere Multimodal Toolkit, with its IBM WebSphere Everyplace Multimodal Environment, that includes IBM Embedded ViaVoice and allows developers to easily build multimodal applications for devices ranging from low resource set top boxes to high-end Digital Video Recorders using the industry standards-based X+V markup language that combines XHTML and VoiceXML.