Affectiva Announces Emotion API for Speech

Affectiva, a company that specializes in Artificial Emotional Intelligence (Emotion AI), has announced that the new Emotion API for Speech is now available to select beta users. The Affectiva Emotion API for Speech (beta) analyzes recorded speech identifying emotion events and gender. An initial set of metrics are available via a beta program, and the metrics include (but not limited to) laughing, anger, irritation, and hostility. The first set of metrics also includes the gender of the speaker in the conversation.

Affectiva provides several emotion recognition products including an Emotion SDK and API that analyzes facial expressions. The Affectiva Platform uses computer vision and deep learning to identify key components of the face (e.g. eyebrows, tip of the nose, corners of the mouth) and then analyze the pixels in the regions to classify different facial expressions. Affectiva states on their website that their platform has been built "on the world's largest emotion data repository of 5.7M faces analyzed in 75 countries." Developers can use the Emotion SDK to build applications that detect emotion in real time on a device, and the API can be used to analyze cloud-stored recorded media.

The new Emotion API for Speech can be applied to a variety of use cases. For example, the API can be used to enhance chatbots and virtual assistants so that they can detect the emotional reactions of users and respond based on those reactions throughout a conversation. "More often than not, humans' interactions with technology are transactional and rigid," said Dr. Rana el Kaliouby, co-founder and CEO, Affectiva, in a prepared statement. "Conversational interfaces like chatbots, social robots or virtual assistants could be so much more effective if they were able to sense a user's frustration or confusion and then alter how they interact with that person. By learning to distinguish emotions in facial expressions, and now speech, technology will become more relatable, and eventually, more 'human.'"

For more information about the new Affectiva Emotion API for Speech, visit

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