Acapela voices automatically inform passengers on the go.
Vestfold Kollektivtraffikk AS (VKT), the public organization in charge of public transport within the area of Vestfold in Norway, has been using Acapela voices for its on board bus announcements since November 2016.
The move towards automatic voice announcements for VKT’s Passenger Information System is part of a twofold modernization program of the company.
The first step was engaged in 2014 with the integration and deployment of the new system on board the company buses. Today 210 of a total of 240 buses are equipped with the Passenger Information System, delivered by Fara AS in Norway.
As the second step, a couple of months ago, human voice recordings were replaced by audio samples generated with synthetic speech.
“At VKT, we have chosen to switch from human voice recordings to synthetic speech to gain in flexibility and easily maintain and update the passenger information system voice data, which currently counts 2500 bus stop names” says Bjorn G.Aasebo, IT Manager at VKT.
All passengers and specifically the visually impaired and blind users are vocally informed of the next stop to ease their journey and allow them to be more autonomous.
A third-party application developed by Bouvet AS has been used to get the audio file in the right format played in the bus, using the RTO-software.
‘Acapela voices are very appreciated by the passengers for their naturalness. Our pleasant voices provide them smooth and intelligible audio information resulting in an optimized user experience. From an operator point of view, it offers more flexibility with voice databases that are easy to maintain and update” says Lars-Erik Larrson, CEO of Acapela Group. “We are happy that VKT selected Acapela in its modernization process. This new deployment confirms that we are on the right track with our Transport Business Unit, which focuses on the specific needs of more and more public transport customers and partners’.
Acapela transport was created in 2014 to provide Transport companies and operators with tailored solutions that fit their needs. For 3 years, the business unit’s solutions have been spreading throughout the public transport market to provide advanced yet affordable and flexible solutions for Automatic and real-time passenger information.
About VKT https://www.vkt.no/