Sonos Gets A Wireless Voice Competitor

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Sonos has a new competitor in the wireless audio market in Australia with the launch of a new Voco Wireless Media System that streams unlimited media from multiple sources to devices spanning TVs, tablets, smartphones, and Apple iPads. Users can also control the system using their voice.An application that is available from the iTunes store lets users establish multiple zones around a home or office, with content accessed when a user simply speaks the name of an artist, song, album or other piece of metadata into an Android-enabled or Apple device. The system then pulls up a variety of options from both local and cloud-based sources.

Launched at the 2012 CEDIA EXpo in Brisbane, Voco lets users connect a Voco Zone into an audio system of your choice including home theatre receiver, stereo, TV, or powered speakers.

Once connected a user can control their content via voice commands from a smartphone, tablet or a PC.
The Voco voice and touch user interface connects over a Wi Fi or broadband connection.

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Unlike the Sonos system users can play content from multiple sources simultaneously.

The new system is being distributed in Australia by Qualifi.

Senior VP Tom Gotuzza said that the system works perfectly with Australian accents.

What makes the speech engine so successful is that the processing occurs in the cloud; enabling Voco to provide a much more powerful engine than could otherwise be packed into a lightweight device such as a phone (the voice application also can be download on a computer).

During a CEDIA demo, Gotuzza said “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” and the system found the song stored locally.

He also demonstrated a search for the artist Kings of Leon, which came back with nothing on the local network, but gave the options of finding the artist currently playing (or having a high propensity to play) on any of 50,000 Internet radio stations in the TuneIn database.

The system can also query YouTube.

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