Mobile Voice-Enabled Locator Provides Precise Branch, ATM locations for Callers Nationwide
SAN BRUNO, Calif., March 8 -- Apptera announced that its voice-driven ATM/branch locator application has been deployed this month by one of the largest U.S. banks. This deployment of Apptera Locator utilizes Microsoft MapPoint Web Service location technology and runs on a voice self-service platform from Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, utilizing SpeechWorks(R) speech recognition and text-to-speech software from ScanSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SSFT) and Walsh Media's voice talent. As part of the company's Financial Services Suite, Apptera Locator allows callers to say a street address, cross street, phone number or zip code to access the nearest banking locations. Apptera Locator recognizes spoken addresses and street locations from more than 30 thousand sites and nearly five million streets nationwide, allowing banks and other financial institutions to make mobile location access quick and convenient for callers, and better serve customers by providing more accurate locations.
Apptera Locator is one of six applications in the company's comprehensive Financial Services Suite introduced last month. The applications help organizations provide better quality and more efficient customer service than touchtone systems for a fraction of the cost of agent-handled calls. Callers can choose the most convenient banking locations whether at home or when traveling by simply navigating through the returned list of banks with intuitive commands such as "next," "previous," or "repeat." With Apptera Locator, or any of the Financial Services Suite applications, enterprises can deploy speech in as little as one month and enjoy compelling cost savings over the life of their system.
"Today's financial institutions are constantly challenged to improve customer satisfaction without negatively impacting their bottom line," said Steve Ehrlich, vice president of marketing for Apptera. "Apptera Locator delivers on the promise of quality customer service by providing more accurate information to callers and increasing call success rates with cost efficiencies that only packaged applications can provide."
With MapPoint Web Service, Microsoft's mapping and location-based services platform, Apptera Locator precisely determines the caller's geographic position and proximity to banking locations. The application captures the caller's data and uses information provided by MapPoint to offer the closest locations to the caller. Additionally, callers can refine their search to receive additional details such as information relating only to ATMs that accept deposits, or to hear banking hours for a desired location.
Like all of Apptera's speech applications, Apptera Locator is delivered as a highly configurable packaged solution -- working right out of the box complete with upgrades, technical support, documentation and reporting. Apptera Studio, featuring Apptera's unique One-click Configuration(TM), is included with Apptera Locator. While any feature of Apptera Locator can be easily modified for each enterprise, One-click Configuration provides the flexibility for business users to enable or disable functions -- including the ability for callers to search by zip code or phone number without having to understand the detailed dialogs or application call flow. Apptera Locator is designed to make each customer interaction successful and efficient. All dialogs and grammars are pre-tuned specifically for banking usage and call flows are optimized for personalized caller interactions.
"Packaged speech applications can greatly accelerate the development and deployment of sophisticated speech-enabled solutions. The packaging enables enterprises to extract significant business value driven by quick production with lower cost," said Zach Kaiman, lead voice business analyst for Datamonitor. "We are seeing an impressive surge in packaged applications, with Apptera among the vendors at the forefront of this change as the company continues to build momentum in the financial services market."
Pricing and Availability
Apptera Locator is available now for both on-premise deployments and a hosted configuration that is offered in conjunction with Apptera partners.
Pricing is based on a per-application model. An audio or flash demonstration of the application is available at http://www.apptera.com/fss/atm.html.
Apptera's suite of highly configurable, packaged speech applications enrich the caller experience and greatly reduce time-to-market of voice self-service solutions. Apptera significantly lowers the traditional deployment cost and maintenance complexities associated with custom speech offerings, enabling enterprises to deploy speech at one third the time and cost. The company's VoiceXML-based applications are platform-independent and ship with an intuitive, browser-based studio for easily adapting applications to specific business requirements. All applications are pre-tuned, ready to deploy out of the box, and can be easily modified and managed in-house. Founded in 2001, Apptera was recently named to Business 2.0's "Hot Startup" List for 2004. Apptera is a privately held Silicon Valley-based company funded by leading venture firms. For additional information, Apptera can be reached at (650) 635-0600 or http://www.apptera.com.