Facebook acquires speech recognition firm Wit.ai

By Justin Lafferty Comment

Facebook_WitAi

Facebook didn’t wait long to make its first acquisition of 2015. Wit.ai, which builds speech recognition technology, announced Monday that they’re joining Facebook.

Soon, when Facebook asks what’s on your mind, you might be able to tell it, without using a keyboard.

Wit.ai announced the acquisition on its blog:

A great community of 6000+ developers joined forces on the platform, and Wit.ai is already powering hundreds of apps and devices. We gathered an incredible group at our LISTEN conference in November. But we are just scratching the surface of the problem.

That is where today’s big news comes in: Wit.ai is joining Facebook!

It is an incredible acceleration in the execution of our vision. Facebook has the resources and talent to help us take the next step. Facebook’s mission is to connect everyone and build amazing experiences for the over 1.3 billion people on the platform – technology that understands natural language is a big part of that, and we think we can help.

The platform will remain open and become entirely free for everyone. Developers are the life of our project and the energy, enthusiasm and passion of the community has helped turn what was once just a lofty dream, into a reality. We want to continue to build with you.

Facebook confirmed the acquisition in a comment. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Wit.ai has built an incredible yet simple natural language processing API that has helped developers turn speech and text into actionable data. We’re excited to have them onboard.

As more apps develop a talk-to-text-like technology, this acquisition could help Facebook users speak to post status updates or message friends. Here’s a look at how Wit.ai works:

Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 1.50.39 PMReaders: What do you think of the deal? What can Facebook do with Wit.ai technology?

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