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Swisscom TV: Voice-Activated Reading of the News

Text: Céline Tykve, August 14, 2020

Voice-Assistants have become an ever present companion these days. With Livingdocs, you can now optimize and edit news for voice-controlled devices yourself - like Swisscom did for their TV Box.

It’s not news that the usage of AI, chatbots and voice-activated assistants are on the rise. The usage of language functions among Swiss people has increased significantly compared to the previous year (up 37%): already half (51%) of the Swiss population makes regular use of it. Speech functions and voice-activated assistants are mainly used to allow their users to do two things at the same time and to keep one’s hands free (all facts and numbers according to the Voice First Barometer Switzerland 2019).

The Swisscom TV Box, which has been using Livingdocs as a backend to curate their articles and news section for quite a while, has now series, films, sports, but also music playlists, photos and games all ready for you with one command thanks to their voice assistant. With “Hey Swisscom” you wake up the Swisscom Box's voice assistant and tell her what you want. You can control the TV, listen to music, view your photos and operate your smart home with one sentence. So your TV evening starts even before you sit on the couch with snacks and drinks in hand.

What’s even cooler? You can now get the news from Bluewin read to you via the voice assistant in your Swisscom TV Box. With an easy “Hey Swisscom, read me the news!” you will be updated about what’s happening in the world today - all while having your hands free for sipping your first coffee and having a bowl of cereal.

The news messages are imported from Keystone-SDA into Livingdocs, where they are turned into voice briefings - one for the morning, noon, and evening. In the case of Swisscom TV, a list of articles is created (in 3 different languages, like Bluewin) in the Livingdocs editor, which can be edited and listened to before being published. The handling is very similar to a playlist. The editor also allows you to optimize your news for the voice assistant. You can edit the settings and create sanitizers - globally or per language - to improve the readings and define how certain words are pronounced.

With the implementation for the new Swisscom TV Box, Livingdocs now supports media houses in succeeding with voice-assisted projects - in our well-known and easy-to-use fashion. You can now optimize and edit news for voice-controlled devices yourself with the Livingdocs editor. Give it a try here!

Apropos Voice-Assistants...

Maybe you remember our Livingtalk from last year, where the founder of the Swiss Chatbot Startup Paixon, Christoph Süess, talked about how to build an action for Google Home. If you are interested in learning how Voice-Assistants and Chatbots work or want to know how can you teach these digital devices more specific skills, hop over to Vimeo and watch the recording of the Livingtalk session.