Echo Nest

The announcement of music tech firm The Echo Nest’s partnership with voice and natural-language company Nuance is deliberately vague in terms of revealing which services it will affect. The companies are promising it will ensure Nuance’s Natural Language Understanding (NLU) technology will be smarter at music queries, understanding “what people want when they ask for a song, album, or artist with greater accuracy”, drawing on The Echo Nest’s database of attributes to improve “Nuance’s ability to provide an interactive music experience that can play the precise music a particular user has requested, converse with the user, and offer related content using only the voice”. The partnership will have an impact on services on smartphones, tablets, cars, computers and other devices, but which ones? That’s left for conjecture – for example, Nuance is thought to be providing its technology to Apple for its Siri software, so keep an eye on future updates of that for new music features.

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