Automatic speech recognition (ASR) is a technology that processes human speech and converts it to text in real-time. Unlike voice recognition, its purpose is to translate speech from a verbal to text format instead of just identifying an individual’s voice.
In advanced versions, automatic speech recognition focuses on Natural Language Processing (NLP) and allows people and machines to have an almost normal human conversation.
In the most basic terms, speech recognition happens when a computer receives auditory input from a person, breaks down speech components, then transcribes them to text. Today, more advanced speech recognition solutions use machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI).
Instead of coding the rules for speech input translation into text output, you can train an ML model by feeding datasets into an algorithm. Ideally, the model will evolve responses and improve at inference with each interaction.
With its continued innovations, ASR has become indispensable in many industries. Here is a shortlist of applications for the technology.
Contact center companies employ automatic speech recognition to automate processes and ease handling vast customer support demands. By applying advanced analytics to systems like fully automated chatbots and interactive voice response (IVR), they can reduce average handle time, boost conversion rate, and drive better customer outcomes.
ASR technology is heavily used in many industries that require speech transcription services for company meetings, investigative interviews, and medical notes. For instance, health care practitioners benefit from dictation products that enable them to take notes hands-free while attending to patients.
Today’s most popular examples of voice-enabled virtual assistants include Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant. With the ability to use voice commands, people can quickly and efficiently complete tasks like searching the web, sending text messages, and opening applications.
ASR is a useful tool for those learning second languages. Students can practice their accents and pronunciation during self-guided sessions using a computer or phone. After, the ASR software can analyze the voice input and match it with what the system knows to be correct. It can then inform students if the pronunciation is correct.
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