Embedded sound recognition as a trigger for smart appliances

October 10, 2017 // By Julien Happich
Without resorting to computationally intensive speech recognition, startup Audio Analytic bets on sound recognition to smarten up appliances at low cost and make them responsive to contextual audio events.

Audio Analytic licenses an embedded software platform called Artificial Audio Intelligence (ai3), that recognizes and responds to sounds within the home. Users can choose which sound profiles to activate on the device, out of existing sound profiles provided by Audio Analytic.

For the last seven years, the company has been recording and analysing the audio patterns of hundreds of different sounds susceptible to be used as trigger events, such as alarm sounds, breaking glass, barking dogs, baby cries.

"We reduce a sound in its core constituents the size of a small text file that describes to our ai3 (Artificial Audio Intelligence) engine all the sound's varying types so it can recognize it in any context", Audio Analytic's CEO Chris Mitchell told eeNews Europe.

The idea is to have sound profiles embedded in smart devices so these can send notifications to end-users or connect to other devices and trigger their operation (such as video recording, taking a picture, establishing a voice communication etc…)

"We've built up a large collection of sounds with which we can train our artificial algorithms. But another aspect of learning is that once a device is installed, it constantly adapts to its acoustic environment, analysing the noise environment to remove constant noise, so it remains highly accurate while only requiring a small footprint", explained Mitchell.

In effect, by analysing the noise environment, the ai3 engine can recognize a normative sound pattern in a given place, which can then become the basis for creating an alert whenever anomalous sound events occur.