Canadian Manufacturing

Fluent.ai launches a partnership with BSH to voice automate assembly lines

The company came to Fluent.ai through its Venture Client unit, BSH Startup Kitchen, with the goal of increasing efficiency and improving ergonomics.

June 11, 2021  by CM Staff

MONTREAL — On June 10, Fluent.ai, a Canadian embedded voice recognition solutions company, announced the launch of its partnership with BSH, a European manufacturer of connected home appliances, to bring voice automation to its factories. The company came to Fluent.ai through its Venture Client unit, BSH Startup Kitchen, with the goal of increasing efficiency and improving ergonomics for factory operators on the assembly line.

“After considering 11 companies for this partnership, we chose Fluent.ai because of their key competitive differentiators,” said Ion Hauer, Venture Partner at BSH Startup Kitchen. “Fluent.ai’s offline technology is noise robust and low latency which is critical – their solution is able to quickly and accurately understand voice commands even in the noisy environment of the factory. They also provide multilingual and multi-accent support which is key for BSH’s global reach.”

Currently, factory operators must press physical buttons at their workstations in order to move appliances along the assembly line, which takes up to four seconds per workplace. With this in mind, BSH was in search of a solution that would increase efficiency and improve ergonomics for their workers.

Fluent.ai developed a voice control solution for workers to operate heavy machinery by speaking into a headset connected to an embedded voice recognition system. The factory operator simply speaks a WakeWord followed by a command to trigger the appropriate movement of the appliance on the assembly line. The solution also offers improved ergonomics, as workers are able to conveniently operate the assembly line hands-free. Early results from the partnership show major improvements to factory worker productivity, with BSH seeing potential for 75-100 percent efficiency gains on the line.

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“Implementing Fluent’s technology has already improved efficiencies within our factory, with initial implementation of the solution cutting down the transition time from four seconds to one and a half,” said Markus Maier, the project lead in BSH’s Traunreut factory. “In the long run, the production time savings will be invaluable. We started with Fluent.ai on one factory assembly line, moved to three, and BSH is considering rolling the technology out worldwide.”