Innovation from India Gives Speech Disabilities a Voice

Chennai, India-based Invention Labs has created a multilingual augmentative and alternative communication ipad app, Avaz (voice) for people with speech disabilities.  It is priced at  $200 in the U.S. and $100 in India.

“Until the launch of Avaz, all augmentative and alternative communication devices available in the U.S. were monolingual. The U.S. has a large Spanish speaking and Asian population so the product was a natural fit for them. Even today, there is nothing in the market that is as easy to use as Avaz,” says Lucas Steuber, a speech pathologist and co-founder and development director, Aim High Ignite.

About 35,000 children with varying degrees of speech dysfunction use this app, with more than 60% of them in the U.S., 15% in Denmark, 10% in India and the rest spread across the world, reports Outlook Business.

Avaz and FreeSpeech

Based on feedback from therapists that students using this app were able to articulate one word only and not a sentence, Invention Labs created FreeSpeech in which a computer generates the language and helps users communicate in complex sentences. Priced at $10 for the overseas market and $3 in India, this app is more immersive claims CEO Ajit Narayanan, who adds, “We got into this business to give children who had speech disabilities a voice. We have used technology to cater to a larger audience and solve the problem of learning a language, helping people achieve a better standard of living. Language is the best thing that we humans have created. It entertains, enlightens and most importantly empowers.”


December 5, 2016   No Comments

Ford India Makes the Ecosport SUV for U.S. Market

The updated 2017 Ford EcoSport, meant for the American market, will be made at Ford’s plant in India, in the southern city of Chennai.

Changes envisaged are a revised tail gate, bumper and tail lamps. The front grille is chunkier with chrome slats, while head lamps and the front bumper have changed too.

Ford Ecosport

On the inside, 2017 EcoSport gets a new dashboard and steering wheel; a more advanced SYNC3 infotainment technology; a new 8-inch screen working in tandem with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto commands; as well as B&O Play audio settings.

The EcoSport is one of the most prominent models for the company iacross the world, reports IndianCarsBikes.In




November 23, 2016   No Comments

BMW To Make Small Motorcycle in India for Global Sale

Frank Schloeder, president of the German subsidiary BMW India, told the Times of India that, “While India is a big market in itself, we have plans to position the G310R as a global product. The India-made bike will be sold in Germany, the U.S. and many countries in Europe.”

BMW G 310 R

The company will launch the BMW G310R in the Indian market in the first quarter of next year. The first sub-500 cc bike to be offered from BMW is made in collaboration with Chennai-based TVS at the latter’s production plant in Hosur, in the southern  state of Tamil Nadu.

Currently, there are no BMW Motorrad showrooms in India, but these will be launched next year, according to

October 28, 2016   No Comments

Speech Analytics Startup Can Understand Almost Any Language

Featured in this year’s Next Generation Leaders by Time Magazine, Umesh Sachdev, CEO and co-founder of Chennai-based speech analytics startup, Uniphore Software Systems, was selected for his work toward “Building a Phone That Can Understand Almost Any Language.”



Uniphore’s Akeira, a virtual assistant, allows consumers to ask questions in their language of choice, and get the desired answer. The responses are formulated based on a series of keywords to ensure seamless flow of accurate results to a query placed in multiple ways, says the company. It provides support for more than 25 global languages and over 150 dialects and is being used by over 5 million people mostly in India.

“We wanted to do something that would have a mass impact,” explains Sachdev.




October 16, 2016   No Comments

JPMorgan Expands Footprint in India

New York-based JPMorgan Chase & Co. will open three branches in India, even as global competitors HSBC and UBS are scaling back to cut costs and bolster capital. JPMorgan is witnessing an increasing level of cross-border activity among its clients as they capture more business driven by India’s economic growth, Madhav Kalyan, chief executive of the bank’s Indian unit, said.

India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, granted approval  to open the outlets in the capital New Delhi, in Devanahalli, Bangalore where the international airport is located, and in Paranur, near Chennai, where the banks will provide existing products and services including cash management, trade finance and foreign-currency payments, The bank already has one branch in Mumbai, which opened in 1994, reports Blomberg.

JPMorgan Chase

“We’ve been very careful in selecting these locations,” given Chennai’s status as a manufacturing hub and Bangalore’s standing as an information-technology center, Muhammad Aurangzeb, Asia-Pacific CEO of JPMorgan’s global corporate bank, said in a phone interview. “We have a number of clients in both locations. The target market in our wholesale business is very clear, which is very different from retail,” Aurangzeb added.


July 2, 2016   No Comments