How Audioburst and Bragi are disrupting the earphone market through content and AI
We're at the beginning of what many are calling the audio era, with streaming music, podcasts, and "hearables" like wireless headphones on the rise. And it's leading organizations, like Voicebot.ai, Audioburst, and Bragi that are defining the audio era. Bret Kinsella, founder of Voicebot.ai, Amir Hirsh, CEO of Audioburst, and Nikolaj Hviid, CEO of Bragi, joined us at VOICE Global on June 16 to discuss their take on voice-enabled technology. Bret Kinsella conducted an interview with both Amir Hirsh and Nikolaj Hviid, in which they shared their vision of what voice tech is and where it's headed.
The era of audio personalization
The audio era is going to be big on personalization. The mobile era brought on many personalized features, most of which are visual. Not so with audio, which has been broadcast-based since the beginning. But that's about to change with a new kind of computing device. As Bret Kinsella says, "The next phase in the development of this space, I believe, is going to be personalization. That's what we saw in the mobile era when we brought out the mobile video, social media, all sorts of visual personalization type of experiences, and that has been the dominant trend."
As far as computing devices go, what's more personal than a computer that you wear on your head - and your ears?
During the interview, Nikolaj Hviid of Bragi outlines his vision for a wireless headphones computer that uses voice as its main interface. The headphones themselves are the computing device. They're not tethered to a phone, tablet, or computer; they have computing power, including memory, storage, and a host of sensors. "So, we've been communicating through audio for much longer than through writing and screens, and that will come back. We are building the infrastructure to enable that audio communication path," said Nikola.
Personalized audio search
Amir Hirsh, for his part, discusses a new product, launched during VOICE Global, that Audioburst has developed. It's called The Audioburst Engager, and it allows web visitors to search and discover specific audio moments.
The Audioburst Engager is AI-powered and scans talk audio, radio podcasts, social audio, and online archives and automatically segments them into short searchable clips that are fully indexed with metadata attached to each clip. The Audioburst Engager can be integrated into mobile apps, websites, even into vehicles. Any organization that wants to offer its customers audio experiences can incorporate it into its products to deliver audio search, personalized playlists, topical playlists, alerts, and any other audio content-based offering and services. A perfect match for Bragi’s wireless headphones computer.
Hirsh believes that historically, we've overprivileged our eyes over our ears, but that will change in the audio era. "Well, I want to say first we were wrong, okay. We valued our eyes more than our ears. However, research has shown that when we interact with one another, audio works way better than video. We should invest and place more and more of our budgets, of our activity, and our technology into the auditory world." Bragi and Audioburst are making that happen.