Press release

Nuance Integrates More AI into Automotive Assistant for Passengers

Nuance’s Dragon Drive now features always-listening AI-powered Automotive Assistant to let passengers engage the system; adds AI for intelligent in-car text messaging and new personalization capabilities for drivers

Las Vegas (CES 2017) and Burlington, Mass. – January 5, 2017 – Nuance Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: NUAN) today announced new Artificial Intelligence and Automotive Assistant capabilities for its Dragon Drive connected car framework to deliver advanced contextualized and personalized in-car experiences. Dragon Drive now features always-listening multi-passenger communication and AI-enabled text messaging, as well as additional feature for driver personalization.

Dragon Drive already offers cognitive reasoning as part of its Automotive Assistant service, giving automakers the ability to deeply integrate an intelligent virtual personal assistant in the HMI cockpit that can listen, understand, reason and respond. Dragon Drive leverages contextual and situational data from the car and the driver to deliver an assistant that can proactively suggest navigation routes, points of interest, music and more.

Today, Nuance has expanded the capabilities of its Automotive Assistant, providing automakers with the ability to extend assistant capabilities to all passengers in the car – not simply the driver. With its Multi-passenger interaction solution, the in-car assistant can communicate with multiple people in the car leveraging Nuance’s wake-up word technology and identifying the passenger with voice biometrics. For example, the driver may engage the assistant to place a phone call while a passenger in the backseat can engage the system to play their “Las Vegas road trip” playlist.

Nuance’s multi-passenger interaction solution is currently shipping in 2016 and 2017 BMW Group vehicles, allowing drivers and front-seat passengers to interact with the BMW connected in-car infotainment system powered by Dragon Drive.

Nuance also announced advanced AI-enabled text messaging, where the automotive assistant can understand the context of an incoming message and proactively suggest a response or take an action based on its contents. For example, if a driver receives the message at 1:30 p.m., “Let’s meet at Michigan Central Station at 2:15,” the Automotive Assistant will interpret the details and ask the driver if she would like to navigate to Michigan Central station given the time, as well as ask whether she would like to send back a message. The assistant will also provide options such as adding a meeting to a calendar.

Nuance’s AI-enabled text messaging also inserts additional context and information into an outgoing message dictated through the system. For instance, the driver may say “Tell Rebecca when I will arrive,” and the assistant will send a message to Rebecca with a message stating “I will arrive at 2:20 p.m.” The assistant knows based on the distance and navigation the expected arrival time, and understands which Rebecca to contact based on previous messaging exchanges or frequency of contact. Frequent contacts and their preferred contact details (mobile versus office or home) are learned by the Automotive Assistant over time. However, corrections are quick and easy with Dragon Drive’s voice barge-in technology that allows drivers to interrupt the assistant at any time.

“Automakers are keen to differentiate within the HMI through automotive virtual assistants that provide intuitive access to a range of apps and services – setting the stage for assistants that will play a central role in the evolving landscape of autonomous cars and shared car services. As such, automotive assistants need to extend beyond the driver with deep conversational and cognitive capabilities that allow the system to seamlessly understand a range of needs and personal preferences,” said Derek Viita, senior analyst, user experience practice, Strategy Analytics.

Nuance Dragon Drive also gives automakers the ability to easily update already deployed infotainment systems over the air with plug-ins that leverage the Nuance Mix NLU development platform. Automakers have access to an array of plug and play domains, such as sports, news, music and more that are conversational and intelligent, can be quickly and easily integrated in the head unit, accessible via the cloud or smartphone without impacting other apps and services in the infotainment system.

“Automakers are redefining innovation in the HMI with conversational automotive assistants that bring artificial intelligence behind the wheel,” said Arnd Weil, senior vice president, automotive, Nuance Mobile. “These latest enhancements to our Dragon Drive platform bring the automotive assistant experience beyond the driver’s seat, giving passengers the ability to access content and services. This shared automotive assistant concept is critical as we enter the next era of transportation, where autonomous vehicles and shared driving services begin to take shape across ‘smart cities.’ And while there will always be drivers, we’ll see the number of autonomous and shared vehicle passengers rise, giving way to more services and capabilities that automotive assistants can quickly access and deliver.”

Dragon Drive

Dragon Drive offers a level of user experience unmatched by aftermarket third party mobile phone solutions or solutions relying on cloud-based speech technology alone. Nuance’s unique hybrid voice capabilities provide drivers with a safer, smarter way to access apps and services, across more than 40 different languages. To learn more, visit Dragon Drive on

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About Nuance Communications, Inc.

Nuance Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ : NUAN) is a leading provider of voice and language solutions for businesses and consumers around the world. Its technologies, applications and services make the user experience more compelling by transforming the way people interact with devices and systems. Every day, millions of users and thousands of businesses experience Nuance’s proven applications. For more information, please visit

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