Enterprise Integration Group (EIG) has been quietly solving difficult user interface design problems, while other companies have been focused on patenting speech recognition technology. The company’s latest patent, "Method and System for Interjecting Comments to Improve Information Presentation in Spoken User Interfaces,” includes ShadowPrompt, or a mechanism for prompting speech and touch-tone in IVR systems.
EIG first started applying for patent protection in 2000. In a release, Rex Stringham, president and CEO of EIG, said, "At the time we invented these techniques, speech vendors believed that touch-tone would eventually cease to exist as a user interface. No one was working on approaches that combined both speech and touch-tone modalities."
This latest patent covers such things such as mixed-mode or ShadowPrompt, now an EIG trademark, and prompt tapering.
Bruce Balentine, executive vice president and chief scientist for EIG, said, "We have consistently focused on addressing the limitations of the telephone channel. Technology alone cannot solve the core problems." The techniques that have been implemented by EIG have proven to significantly improve the performance and customer acceptance of IVR systems worldwide.
The intellectual property from EIG significantly improves IVR self-service, call handling time, and properly routes to appropriate call center agents, and guarantees customer success in navigating dialogues. Balentine went on to say that "EIG techniques have been applied to all types of touch-tone and speech recognition technologies including natural language.”
Numerous solutions from EIG are currently being deployed. The company generally licenses their intellectual property as and when they deliver professional services to their clients. Stringham went on to say that some practitioners may be infringing on EIG’s patented techniques, and that the company is working to resolve any potential problems.
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