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Item locator for a large store using IBM WebSphere Voice Application Access Technology Disclosure Number: IPCOM000028373D
Original Publication Date: 2004-May-13
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-May-13
Document File: 2 page(s) / 172K

Publishing Venue



Disclosed is a system based on IBM WVAA platform that enriches the customer experience in a large store by enabling a customer to locate a desired item quickly and efficiently by a simple voice query. Consequently, it helps the customer to avoid frustrations and delays associated with searching through the store aisles or asking store employees who are not always able to help.

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YOR820030218 Thu A Dang/Watson/IBM Subrata K Das

Item locator for a large store using IBM WebSphere Voice Application Access Technology

Figure 1 is a schematic diagram of the invention. The Customer Inquiry Stations (CIS), each with a microphone and a loudspeaker, are connected to the IBM WebSphere Voice Application Access (WVAA) platform. The CIS may optionally be equipped with a display monitor as well. The CIS are strategically placed at a reasonable height in locations throughout the store for customer convenience. A side benefit of placing the CIS at a certain height is that children are discouraged to play or tamper with these units.

The WVAA is linked to the "Data Bank of the Store" which is routinely updated by using the "Store Management Data Entry System". The WVAA and its associated data bank and data entry system are kept in a secure central location and are accessible only to authorized store personnel. This data bank maintains the store inventory. In addition, it is used to keep track of where in the store a particular item is located. Each time an item's location is changed to suit the needs of the store management, the "Store Management Data Entry System" is used to record this change in the "Data Bank of the Store".

A customer wishing to locate an item in the store speaks the inquiry into the microphone of a CIS. The speech is forwarded to the WVAA where the "Speech...