Irish company SoapBox Labs today announced a partnership with Microsoft in an effort to address childhood literacy. Through the partnership, SoapBox Labs will bring its AI-driven child-specific speech recognition technology to Microsoft's Azure cloud platform to deliver a solution for child literacy which is available across global markets. The partnership is initially being rolled out on a pilot basis in Ireland and the UK.
The pilot project will set out to demonstrate how SoapBox Labs' kids' speech recognition technology can be used at scale with Microsoft Azure, to support accessibility, literacy and language learning for young children.
SoapBox Labs' speech recognition technology powers automated reading and language learning tutors that can advance a child's literacy skills by allowing the device to 'listen' as a child reads aloud, assessing pronunciation and responding appropriately, just as a helpful adult would do.
"Children's voices differ greatly from adult's, both physically and behaviourally. Off-the-shelf speech recognition designed for adult voices and behaviours do not work accurately for children," said Patricia Scanlon, Founder and CEO, SoapBox Labs. "Our proprietary speech recognition technology is designed for children aged 4-12, modelling their voices and behaviours and thereby ensuring high accuracy."