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netECHO™ is an Audio Internet Browser PLUS A Voice Portal. Here are the key differences:
Voice Portal Audio Internet Browser
User gets access to a narrow, pre-determined set of information, via a customized 'portal' or gateway, using voice commands, and listening to the customized information, such as stocks, news, horoscopes, restaurants, directions, etc.

Part of the voice portal information may be drawn from the Internet, although it is usually provided from other information databases, built specifically for this use. User interaction with the Internet is not possible.

User cannot access information other than what is already provided (and screened) by the voice portal provider.

User gets voice portal like access, but that is just the beginning.

Starting from there, access to the entire Internet is provided, using voice commands and listening to the contents of any Web page, as they are being dynamically translated into speech.

User interaction with the Internet is available. Users can surf, browse, search, access email, do voice-based e-commerce, etc.

Access is via any phone, a computer is not needed. Any Web page can be accessed, voice-enabled, as well as 'regular' ones.

netECHO™ is an Audio Internet Browser PLUS A Voice Portal.
netECHO™, InternetSpeech's first service, provides a true audio Internet experience. Using an ordinary telephone and simple voice commands, users will be able to surf and hear the entire Internet for the information they desire. A computer is not needed. Any web page will be accessible - including, but not limited to sites written with Wireless Application Protocol, and pages that are specially written in Voice Extensible Mark-up Language (VXML).

netECHO™ also includes some voice portal capability, for quick, easy access to specific information, including stock quotes, news, horoscopes, etc. Users have the option, however, to surf anywhere the Web will take them. netECHO™ also provides email sending and receiving capabilities using voice commands.

Alternative Ways to Access the Internet, Surf and Hear Web Pages
netECHO™ is the simplest way to access the Internet without a computer, since any phone - wireline or wireless - will work.

Other solutions, such as Personal Digital Assistants, phones with display screens and other Internet appliances, are available, but have limitations. Users must have special hardware with intelligence built in, and often must view the Web through small, difficult-to-read screens. Such devices are often expensive, as well.

Some voice-enabled Web sites exist that users can access without special equipment. However, there are only a few today, and it is not yet possible to surf between sites.

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