Nuance Communications, Inc. today announced that TeleNav, Inc. has selected Nuance Mobile to speech-enable its mobile device-based navigation service.

Using the Nuance Mobile Speech Platform on select devices, TeleNav now provides the ability to enter destinations for driving directions and business category searches by voice, so that subscribers no longer need to use a telephone keypad. Users can simply state the destination address, or select from a database of more than 10 million points of interest by stating a category, such as “pharmacy,” or by stating a specific business name, such as “Walgreens.”

Mobile users can conveniently access TeleNav GPS Navigator on a device they already carry with them and receive information in real-time based on their current location. Voice destination entry, which makes navigation services easier to use on mobile phones, has the ability to significantly enhance an already fast-growing market for mobile navigation. Industry analyst firm, In-Stat predicts that the total number of mapping and navigation mobile phone subscribers could exceed 70 million worldwide by 2012.

“We have worked with Nuance since the launch of the Nuance Mobile Speech Platform last year to determine the best application of speech technologies to improve the ease of use of our market-leading navigation solutions,” said Hassan S. Wahla, senior director, business development, TeleNav. “Nuance offers not only the industry’s leading technology, but also a proven history of delivering speech-enabled navigation services that improve the overall user experience. We believe the speech interface offers us a clear differentiation in the marketplace and will enhance our relationships with carriers as increased use of our service drives higher ARPU.”

“Nuance pioneered the use of speech technology to conduct information searches, and the Nuance Mobile Speech Platform leverages the speech technology and expertise we’ve gained as the leading provider of automated directory assistance deployments to give consumers faster and easier access to the information they need,” said Michael Thompson, vice president and general manager, mobile search, communications and handsets, Nuance. “As with many mobile applications, widespread consumer adoption of navigation services requires a more efficient user interface, such as speech. Nuance speech solutions enable TeleNav to offer a more natural and intuitive user interface for subscribers to drive further adoption and usage.”

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