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AOL owned Tegic Communications, which provides predictive text technology to most of the mobile handset manufacturers launched their XT9 predictive text technology in India.
The XT9 represents a marked improvedment over T9, with next word prediction, multiple input methods and predictive error correction increased speed and accuracy. I liked the predictive error correction feature – if I type. They also said that XT9 has ‘motile’ instead of ‘mobile’, the XT9 will recommend ‘mobile’ even though ‘b’ and ‘t’ aren’t on the same key on the keypad. For smart phones, the lower half of the screen has been divided into three parts – for numbers, text and characters, and the XT9 software predicts accordingly (5 in the character zone will be S in the text zone).
At a press conference in New Delhi yesterday, Eric D. Collins, VP-Sales Wireless Development, Tegic Communications said that the XT9 primarily targets the Smart Phones market, of which Tegic only has around 5% marketshare; they have over 80% of the mobile phone market, with tie-ups with most handset manufacturers.
The XT9 is limited to high end handsets (around Rs.15,000 and above) due to its high memory requirements, and is currently available only in English in India. Mridul Srivastava, Senior Country Manager (India), AOL Mobile said that depending on the market scenario they will eventually develop XT9 for vernacular languages, but no time-frame has yet been set. Currently, the T9 supports 8 Indian languages. To increase the usage and acceptance of predictive text in India, AOL Mobile has been conducting events and roadshows in collaboration with mobile manufacturers and service operators. Forget B & C category towns – I’ve come across people in cities who don’t use the T9 dictionary because they find it confusing. Srivastava rightly said that “Customer education is the key to success”. I think they need to look at cities too, not just towns.
The XT9 should be shipping into India shortly, installed on handsets from Samsung, HTC and Toshiba.
– Tegic To Provide Texting Software To Tata Teleservices