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Netscape invests in voice processing

As part of its plan of integrating voice, sound, and video into future versions of its Navigator browser, Netscape Communications has acquired an equity stake in voice-processing company Voxware.

As part of its plan of integrating voice, sound, and video into future versions of its Navigator browser, Netscape Communications has acquired an equity stake in voice-processing company Voxware.

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Netscape also licensed Voxware's digital voice compression and decompression technology and will integrate the software into its LiveMedia framework for bringing real-time audio and video to Netscape's software platform.

The investment in Voxware is part of a strategy to seed the market for voice and audio technologies on the Net and to integrate them where possible directly into the browser, according to a Netscape spokesperson. Other technologies that will be featured in the LiveMedia framework include videoconferencing, 3D content, and streaming video.

Netscape, for example, also helped British multimedia company On-Demand Information to develop its On Demand Xchange (ODX) system for transmitting simultaneous voice traffic and Internet data over the same analog phone line, according to a Reuters report.

With ODX, two users can view Web pages and discuss it over the phone while adding notes to the page. The system is aimed at companies that provide customer support or take orders over the telephone.