3M and VocalZoom will Develop new Voice-Enabled User Interface Technology
27 November, 2012
3M Company and VocalZoom Ltd., a developer of speech enhancement technology, announced an equity investment and collaboration to develop a a new class of voice-enabled user interface.
VocalZoom was founded in 2009 and developed an optoelectronic microphone that significantly improves the speaker’s understanding in any noisy environment. While conventional approaches focus on filtering and signal processing to isolate the voice from ambient noise, VocalZoom’s patented technology integrates a standard acoustic microphone and a special optical sensor to solely detect the speaker’s voice.
The company’s system embed the signals acquired from directional Microphone with information about the vibrations in the throat and mouth of the speaker, acquired by a separate image processing unit. “The investment in VocalZoom will help us to complement our existing technology in this field, and to collaboratively develop new products for our OEM customers”, said Stefan Gabriel, president of 3M New Ventures, the corporate venture organization of 3M.
“Israel is one of the most vibrant technical and entrepreneurial regions in the world and there are plenty of opportunities for 3M. VocalZoom is our very first investment and we look forward to other investments in Israeli high tech startups,” said Nir Leshem, managing director of 3M Israel.
3M New Ventures, headquartered in Munich, Germany, invests in innovative companies and technologies with strategic relevance for 3M.