Harman Kardon Smart Speakers Feature Synaptics DSPs

Synaptics’ AudioSmart far-field voice DSPs are now being used in new devices from Harman International.

The Harman Kardon Allure four-mic speaker and the Allure Portable two-mic speakers both feature Amazon’s Alexa Voice Service, enabling voice-based user interaction via the Alexa virtual assistant. The AudioSmart solution’s role is to facilitate that interaction by enabling the devices to pick up users’ wake words and voice commands even when there is a lot of background noise, and even if the users are several feet away from the speakers.

In a statement announcing the integrations, Synaptics VP Saleel Awsare pointed to the rise of voice interaction in mass market devices as a major opportunity for his firm’s technology. “Voice as a human interface is rapidly expanding in consumer electronics and smart homes due to the broad global expansion of ASR services, and since AudioSmart is platform agnostic, Synaptics is well-poised to support HARMAN on future projects,” he said.

Pertinent to that ‘platform agnosticism’ is Synaptics’ other big AudioSmart news this week that the company is working with Microsoft to bring the technology to devices supporting the latter’s Cortana voice-based AI assistant platform. As for Harman’s speakers, the Harman Kardon Allure is available now, while the Allure Portable will launch in spring of this year.