Rovi to power DISH's voice-based TV interface

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 
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Rovi’s Natural-Language Spoken-Voice Interfaces, Supporting Two-way Dialogue Between Users and Their TVs, to Debut at DISH

SANTA CLARA and CUPERTINO, Calif. — Rovi Corporation (NASDAQ: ROVI) today announced that DISH Network Corp. (NASDAQ: DISH) plans to add Rovi Conversation Services’ natural-language spoken-voice interface to a portfolio of products. Throughout 2015, DISH plans to integrate Rovi’s voice technology into its DISH Explorer second-screen app for iPad, Hopper Voice remote, and DISH Anywhere app for on-the-go viewing from mobile devices. This will enable DISH customers to use everyday spoken language to search shows and movies across live television, recordings and Video-on-Demand catalogs.

“Consumers seek a television experience that gets them to their shows with minimal hassle,” said Vivek Khemka, senior vice president of product management at DISH. “DISH is committed to implementing the best technology for our customers, and we believe the introduction of voice recognition will provide them with a more intuitive search experience. We selected Rovi as our voice technology provider as they have demonstrated a deep understanding of semantics and natural-language capabilities.”

“As a leader in conversational interfaces for video and television services, Rovi is at the forefront of developing new semantic natural language technologies that enable consumers to talk to their TVs as if they were having a conversation with another person rather than a device,” said Daren Gill, vice president of products, advanced search and recommendations at Rovi. “Given the scale of DISH’s subscriber base, we hope to significantly shift the public perception of how people can discover and navigate content with next-gen semantic technologies in ways that have not been possible before.”

Rovi Conversation Services provides a fluent, error-tolerant, voice solution that delivers convenience and control exceeding today’s typical command-driven voice systems. Its next-generation conversation interfaces allow free-flowing dialogue that delivers fast and contextually relevant search results. Rovi achieves this through predictive semantic intelligence and a deep understating of entertainment within a real-world context.

For example, a user who can’t remember the name of a specific movie could just ask, “What’s the name of that movie about the great mathematician who suffered from schizophrenia?” Rovi will return with A Beautiful Mind and showcase any options for watching the movie. It additionally allows the user to ask follow-up questions and carry on a natural conversation, such as “Who stars in the movie?” or “What role does Russell Crowe play in the movie?” or “Show me other movies that deal with schizophrenia.” In all instances, Rovi will understand the conversational pivot and make semantic connections to return correct answers and relevant content. The system is also capable of talking back to users to clarify queries, make suggestions or confirm the user’s request.

Rovi Conversation Services is powered by a dynamic Knowledge Graph, which maintains semantic, real-time information on more than 100 million entertainment-related entities, like program titles, celebrity names, brands and other relevant elements. This enables Rovi to anticipate viewers’ preferences by applying a range of contextual relevance filters that take into consideration the time of day, day of week and location.