Speech recognition in… a movie?!


The whole point of speech recognition is to enhance interaction. People prefer to speak rather than press buttons repeatedly. The goal is to achieve a better customer experience.

Now think about another popular experience: going to the movie theater. How would you rate that experience? First of all, it is quite passive — the audience watches the screen, having no control to what’s being shown. And secondly, the experience lacks interaction — the audience sits through the duration of the film, just staring at what’s in front of them.

But some creative horror movie maker has taken the genre to another level by employing speech recognition software into the movie theater experience. The product is Last Call, the first interactive horror film:

Last Call is the first interactive horror movie in the world where the audience is able to communicate with the protagonist. A film controlled by a member of the audience, thus blurring the boundaries between game and film. Language recognition software transforms the participant’s answers via mobile phone into specific instructions. A specially developed software then processes these commands and launches an appropriate follow-up scene. The dialogue between the movie’s main actress and an audience member leads to a different film – and outcome – every time: sometimes with a happy end, sometimes with a more gruesome one. To participate in the adventure, audience members submit their mobile phone numbers to a speed dial code when they buy their ticket. The moment the female protagonist takes out her phone to call someone who might be able to help her, the film’s controlling software contacts one of the submitted mobile phone numbers. Once the viewer picks up, he hears the actress’s voice – who tells him she would be lost without him. He has to help her escape by choosing a path through the old, rundown sanatorium. Furthermore, he also decides whether she should help other victims to flee the scene -and every single choice shapes her fate: it’s a matter of life and death.

Look at the reaction from the audience. Does your speech-enabled IVR elicit such a strong positive response from callers? Probably not, because most of the time speech recognition is thought to be just a replacement for touch-tone. That type of thinking greatly limits the potential of a speech IVR. Instead, you should do away with your contact center manager hat and find your inner movie maker.

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