March newsletter: Assessing short sounds with speech technology

March 14, 2022

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Here’s your March roundup from the world of voice technology for kids. Let’s dive right in!

This month: Read about how short sounds and markup features enhance the accuracy and efficacy of our voice engine when powering reading tools, the latest tech and privacy headlines in the kids’ space, our webinar on March 15, new roles at SoapBox, and more. 

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Assessing short sounds with speech technology

Learning letter names and sounds is a crucial first step of learning to read. In this latest SoapBox Tech Blog article, Mauro Nicolao and Siva Reddy Gangireddy explore how our Speech Tech and Engineering teams set out to develop the Short Sounds feature, the challenges of verifying such short events, and use case examples.

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Markup: Giving meaning to words

What is markup? And what role does it play in delivering accuracy in our speech tech for kids? Niall Mullally and Lora Lynn O’Mahony walk us through use cases and explain how markup gives customers better control over how their reference text is normalized by our voice engine.

Read the blog

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WEBINAR: Can voice tech help kids learn to read?

The latest statistics on the reading crisis are more than worrisome. According to UNESCO, as many as 100 million children are expected to fall behind the minimum proficiency level in reading due to COVID. Voice-enabled reading assessment and practice tools can help tackle this crisis. Learn more on Tuesday, March 15, by joining the discussion with our panel of education companies and advocates.

Read more


Meet Jamie at Bett

Meet COO Jamie Beaumont at Bett in London at the end of March. Get in touch with us to set up a meeting with him.

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See you at ASU+GSV in April?

CEO Martyn Farrows will be at ASU+GSV in San Diego in April. He’ll be joining a panel on early childhood AI and voice, and happy to meet with anyone interested in voice tech for kids. Want to meet with Martyn? Get in touch


Voice AI and kidtech community news

A sobering look at the “reading emergency”: “It’s ‘Alarming’: Children Are Severely Behind in Reading” – New York Times

More on reading loss: “More Than 1 in 3 Children Who Started School in the Pandemic Need ‘Intensive’ Reading Help” – EdWeek

How kids are spending their time online: “Study Notes: YouTube Dominates Online Time, But Discord Makes Gains” – Kidscreen

Technology meets kids: “Kidtech: Augmented reality, voice commands and the future” – Irish Times

On protecting kids’ online data: “Biden wants to ban advertising targeted toward kids” – Engadget

New research on reading aloud: “Reading builds resilience among at-risk kids” – ScienceDaily

New roles at SoapBox 

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Business Development Representative

Full time | Remote / Dublin, Ireland


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Ops / Site Reliability Engineer

Full time | Remote / Dublin, Ireland


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Product Owner – Technical

Full time | Remote / Dublin, Ireland



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