Microsoft has just confirmed, via an official press release, plans to buy TellMe, the company that powers nearly 40% of US directory assistance calls. The deal is supposed to be worth $800 Million.
TellMe is a very popular service in the USA. Users call the toll-free number from their mobile or landline phones and simply speak the city, state and business they are looking for, and hear the results. TellMe uses open platform VoiceXML to enable speech based queery processing and response.
Mobile capabilities currently in beta seem to be what attracted Microsoft to TellMe. The two mobile products currently on TellMe’s beta site allow mobile users to say what they want and see the results on the mobile screen (voice activated search) and send & receive search queries via SMS.