Deutsche Telekom is developing a smart speaker with two-way HD voice, to support hands-free calling from the speaker. The new device will employ the DECT/ULE communication protocol and HD voice processor based on a chip produced by DSP Group from Herzliya, near Tel Aviv. Industry sources estimated the deal can reach a total of $50 million sales to DT. This is an important boost to DSPG, whose smart home sales declined 27% in Q2 2018.
DT said that two way voice use cases are taking center stage as an innovative application of HD voice technology, paving the way for other voice-enabled smart home applications. “DECT and ULE technologies are the only ones on the market built specifically for voice applications,” said Ofer Elyakim, CEO of DSP Group. “We have spent the last 20 years perfecting our SoC solutions to offer superior customer experiences and enabling leading OEM and service providers’ to deliver innovative smart home products.”
DT beleives that the emergence of voice enabled devices and two-way voice interaction, voice in the smart home will become the interface-of-choice and DECT/ULE is gaining ground as the go-to wireless standard for applications requiring high-quality voice. “With the ability to leverage DSP Group’s HD voice solution in our Smart Speaker to make high quality voice calls with all the benefits of DECT gives us a competitive advantage,” commented Bernd Müller, Lead Product Manager for Smart Speaker at Deutsche Telekom.
Today, this market is dominated mainly by Apple, Amazon and Google. Deutsche Telekom’s announcement indicates that a new copetitor is entering this emerging market.