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AgileTV catches $22 M

Mon, 05/16/2005 - 8:00pm
Jeff Baumgartner

Voice navigation specialist AgileTV Corp. has raised $22 million in a round of funding led by Valence Capital Management LP. The round also included participation from Insight Communications and Lauder Partners.

The Menlo Park, Calif. firm, which has raised about $67 million since its founding in 2000, said it will use the new funds to fuel the development of Promptu, AgileTV's voice navigation platform.

In the home, the platform uses a specialized IR remote control with a built-in push-to-talk button. Voice commands are then sent over the cable network to a server, where they are deciphered and cross-sectioned into the IPG and VOD system. The system is currently set-up to work on Motorola DCT-2000 and DCT-2500 set-tops, though plans are underway to voice-enable more advanced boxes such as the DCT-6412.

AgileTV said the system uses a database of more than 100,000 phrases, and delivers higher than 90 percent voice recognition accuracy.

AgileTV is also beginning to make some inroads with larger cable operators. Comcast Cable has already conducted a technical trial in Philadelphia, and will move to a market trial in the city by the end of Q2, according to an AgileTV spokeswoman. USA Media (now part of Cequel III) previously conducted a 15-month alpha trial with AgileTV.

"AgileTV's voice recognition technology offers the industry a cost-effective, easy to implement solution that will provide customers with increased value - and, it's just plain cool technology," said Insight CEO Michael Willner, in a statement.

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