BMW i Ventures has announced a strategic investment in DSP Concepts, Inc., a startup company, developing embedded digital signal processing audio solutions and a specialist in voice user interface technologies. Christian Noske, a partner at BMW i Ventures, has joined the Company’s Board of Directors.
With smartphones reaching the top of their product life cycle and intelligent assistants like Amazon Alexa and Apple Siri becoming increasingly popular, voice UI is poised to become the next dominant user interface across all industries, from car infotainment systems and consumer electronics, to IoT products and home automation. Realizing the need for faster development and more reliable voice recognition performance, DSP Concepts has developed a series of product offerings powered by its Audio Weaver® audio processing software.
These solutions accelerate time-to-market and achieve maximum performance for any product design at a lower system cost. Partners of DSP Concepts include Amlogic, Inc., Cadence Design Systems, Knowles Corporation, STMicroelectronics, Texas Instruments Inc., and several other leading suppliers of DSP and SoC solutions.
“Consumers have already purchased millions of voice-controlled products, and while they’ve become aware of the power and convenience of voice UI, they’ve also experienced the frustrations that occur when voice UI devices don’t respond quickly and accurately,” said Dr. Paul Beckmann, Chief Technology Officer and founder of DSP Concepts. “Voice UI products powered by our Audio Weaver modular DSP software can be designed and tuned to get the best possible performance from any product or form factor, while saving system costs by taking advantage of available processing power already onboard an SoC or microcontroller.”
BMW i Ventures led the Series A financing round, with participation from Walden Riverwood Ventures and prominent angel investor David Tsang. DSP Concepts will use the funds to refine and add new features to its software platform, as well as grow its team.
“Voice UI will play a huge role in the evolution of the car toward becoming an extension of our digital lives. The type of agile development of voice UI capabilities that DSP Concepts enables will become key for companies that want to bring their products to the next level in alignment with this vision,” said Christian Noske, a partner at BMW i Ventures.
BMW i Ventures, BMW’s EUR 500 Mio venture capital fund, invests money and resources in startups the fields of autonomous driving, digital car and automotive cloud, e-mobility, artificial Intelligence and data, industry 4.0, shared and on-demand mobility, customer digital life, and energy services.
Through its previous investments in the fields of e-mobility, navigation, parking, car sharing and intermodality, BMW i Ventures has already entered into strategic partnerships with innovative providers such as Scoop, Zirx, RiceCell, Chargepoint, Life360, Moovit, JustPark, Chargemaster, Zendrive, Rever Moto, STRIVR, Desktop Metal, BUS.com, Proterra, Xometry, Caroobi, GaN Systems and Shift.