Amazon Buys Into Voice Recognition, Acquires Ivona Software

Amazon on Thursday announced the acquisition of Ivona Software, a text-to-speech firm out of Poland. Ivona Software's voice recognition technologies are already utilized by Amazon's line of Kindle Fire tablets, and the company also provides text-to-speech products and services for thousands of developers, businesses, and customers around the globe.

"Ivona’s exceptional text-to-speech technology leads the industry in natural voice quality, accuracy and ease of use. Ivona is already instrumental in helping us deliver excellent accessibility features on Kindle Fire, including Text-to-Speech, Voice Guide and Explore by Touch," said Dave Limp, Vice President, Amazon Kindle. "The Ivona team shares our passion for innovation and customer obsession, and we look forward to building great products to deliver world-class voice solutions to customers around the world."

Kindle Fire

Amazon didn't say how much it paid for Ivona Software, nor did it go into any details about its plans for the company, but it's interesting on a number of levels. Could Amazon be looking to build its own version of Siri? It's very possible, and if that's the case, one has to think the oft rumored Kindle Phone can't be too far behind.

Ivona's voice and language portfolios span 44 voices in 17 languages, with more in development.