Nuance Communications, the company behind Samsung smartphones' voice control system and Dragon transcription software, is now opening up their technology to developers. The new tool is called Nuance Mix, which is currently in open beta.
Using Nuance Mix, developers can tell the system what kind of voice commands to respond to by providing 15-20 samples of what may constitute a command. For example, to send a message within an app, you may need to provide examples like "send Moe a text", "text Michael", and "send a text to Allen." On top of that, Nuance Mix will continue to learn what kinds of phrases it should add to it's inventory of recognized commands.
While Nuance Mix got its start controlling mobile apps, the company has made it clear that it can be used with hardware as well. This could be a huge next step for IoT. Rather than just controlling your Nest thermostat with your smartphone or manually, you could ask Nest to turn up the heat from your living room. Imagine using an Amazon Echo to buy some paper towels as soon as you run out without needing to buy a product-specific Amazon Dash.
It's unknown whether Google or Apple will be releasing Google Now or Siri to developers to compete in this space, but in any case, it's a great way to further open up the possibilities of the Internet of Things for developers.