28 April 2017 | Last updated 07:00 PM

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Voice Internet for visually challenged users launched
Sakal Times | Wednesday, 11 January 2017 AT 11:15 PM IST
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Pune: A voice-activated web access technology called ‘netECHO’, which helps people to use the Internet with one’s voice over the phone or by landline, was launched recently at Yashada by Dr Vijay Bhatkar, scientist, and Founder of Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC).

The technology lets users give simple voice commands like ‘Yahoo’, or ‘e-mail’ to get information from the Internet. It is designed for the visually challenged as it provides cost effective and high quality Internet experience.

“We have a ‘rendering’ engine that can automatically render today’s visual Internet contents into short, precise, easily navigable and meaningful audio contents. There will be no need to re-write the existing web pages as required by cell phones with the screen,” said Emdab Khan, Founder, and CEO of Internet Speech USA - the American company that developed this technology. It is being promoted in India by the Pune-based IT company Knowaysys Consulting Solutions Pvt Ltd.

According to the organisers of the event, the user will be able to surf any website, search any word, operate emails and do much more by just speaking the words on the phone.
The main focus is to provide complete Internet by voice, to enable the next generation to move towards Interactive Voice Response (IVR) and enhance the capabilities of the physically challenged people by increasing accessibility.

It will be free for the visually challenged users.

Speaking on this occasion, Bhatkar said, “netECHO is a truly revolutionary innovation that will transform the world of the visually challenged users by making available the benefits of Internet to a large number of beneficiaries who were so far deprived of the benefits of the Internet revolution.”

Renowned computer scientist and Founder President of Wavelet Group, Vishwas Udpikar, termed this development as a significant leap forward in making the Internet
available to all.

Ajit Jagtap, Chief Technical Officer of Maharashtra Knowledge Corporation Limited, said that he was happy to be exposed to the human side of information technology.

This technology is currently available in English, Chinese, Japanese and German and will also be available in Indian languages such as Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil, Bengal and Urdu.


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