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Letter from the founder and CEO, March 2009
Thank you for visiting Alango Technologies web-site and for your interest in our company. As you may already know, our mission is to improve voice communication between people. We would like all people to understand each other in all possible situations, but, as a technological company, we are limited to improving the voice quality and intelligibility. Our front-end voice enhancement technologies are used in communication products for hard hearing people, mobile phones, hands-free car kits, Bluetooth headsets, audio-conferencing systems, voice intercom systems as well as in some other applications. We don’t classify our customers as more or less important. Each customer is considered as VIP (Very Important Partner) and we try to do our best to work together and help making the best possible products. We want all our customers to be “number 1”. And, this is also our Way to become “number 1” - by working with our customers and winning together. If you are considering using our technologies, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll be happy to provide you with all relevant information and to assist you as much as we can. We have the richest portfolio of state of the art voice enhancement technologies covering many possible applications. These technologies are combined in “solutions” that are software packages optimized for specific computational platforms. If you need more, we have our own product reference designs that may help you to utilize our technologies in the optimal way. And we have our own hardware modules to make it even easier and faster. However, if you have very specific demands, we’ll be happy to know your needs and think together to give you the most suitable solution. Ultimately, we even have customers that could not find anything suitable on the market and ordered complete high-end products from us (audio conferencing and intercom systems).
Whether you are a potential customer, distributor, strategic investor or employee, I want you to become our friend and our partner. To make your decision easier, I would like to share with you some information about our company, its history, its current status and roadmap to the future. I will try to keep this page “up to date” modifying it according to the latest Alango news and event. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to write me to email@example.com.
Alango Technologies was founded in January2002. The main mission was to develop the third generation of front-end digital acoustic processing technologies and solutions. So what were the first two generations?
The first generation technologies were developed in the beginning and mid 90th of the previous century and they stemmed from extensive academic and industry research in adaptive filtering, noise suppression techniques as well as speech analysis. The first generation technologies paid little attention to integration of different processing blocks. For example in a typical scenario an adaptive filtering block (echo canceller) was followed by a non-linear processor (echo suppressor) further followed by spectral subtraction algorithm (noise suppressor). This approach was a natural transition from theoretical algorithms to practical software, but the outcome was obviously limited by a large code footprint, large computational resources required and long processing delay. I personally took part in the development of first generation technologies working in IBM Research Lab in Haifa (Israel).
I left IBM in 1996 (to help my old colleague in a medical company) and in 1998 I founded Scibit Ltd to develop a new (second) generation of digital front-end acoustic processing. The second generation (in my understanding) was supposed to address the problems of the exponentially growing cellular phone industry. The main goal was to develop technologies providing full-duplex, hands-free communication in mobile environments with the main application in cellular speakerphones and hands-free kits. Many years of previous practical experience quickly led to the first version and a great interest from industry leaders. As a result, Scibit Ltd was put into hibernation and a development center of Altec Lansing Corporation in Haifa was born. It took us another year of development and in 1999 our technologies were powering Euterpe™ Digital Voice Processor from ST Microelectronics, the most innovating, all in one DSP chip of that time. Our software performed adaptive dual microphone array (in 1999!), acoustic echo cancellation, noise reduction, automatic gain control. In addition the chip could do speech recognition (L&H) and biometric verification (KeyWare). There were RAM and ROM versions and the speech quality was the best in the industry. Unfortunately, that was not true for the power consumption… Anyway, at the end of 2000 we formed an independent company led by Tommy Freedman, a legendary sound engineer, entrepreneur and industry visionary (at that time the President of Altec Lansing). Our second generation of technologies was unique and capable of capturing the world. Then the sad story begins… The premature Tommy’s death in 2001, the first semiconductor crisis and some other events led to stop in our funding and the company closure in January 2002.
And then Alango Technologies was born to start it all over again. The third generation of front-end acoustic signal processing technologies we were planning to develop had to be a very low footprint, integrated package of state of the art technologies. Its architecture was also supposed to make it easy to add new technologies into the same framework. And it was supposed to be very scalable covering all range of possible applications: mobile phones, hands-free car kits, Bluetooth accessories, all types of audio/video conferencing systems, different types of intercom systems, security and military applications. It might be our fault, but we did not make much effort to raise money to be able to concentrate on our main task. Instead, we’ve chosen the hard way. We took several R&D projects developing data acquisition boards and software for medical equipment manufacturers. We’d used our past experience in other fields to get some money for living and development of the new generation of voice processing technologies until technology licensing did not start to pay off. It took us 6 years, much more than expected, but finally we have it. We have our third generation of front-end acoustic signal processing technologies integrated into one, low footprint Voice Communication Package. We have customers and we have brand-name products with our technologies on the market. And it is growing...
- We are still a small, but already an international company. Our Headquarters and part of the R&D are in Israel (Tirat-Carmel, 1km from Haifa), but we have another R&D office in Russia (St.Petersburg).
- We have representatives in Korean, Japan, China and Taiwan
- Our business model consists of:
* Technology licensing fees
* Reference designs licensing fees
* NRE for custom modifications and hardware design
* Hardware modules sales
* Custom systems development and sales
- We have the richest portfolio of licensable front-end voice and audio processing technologies and solutions: adaptive dual and multi-microphone arrays, acoustic and line echo cancellation, noise suppression, automatic microphone gain control, noise dependent volume and equalization control for voice and music, acoustic feedback reduction, packet loss concealment and others.
- We have several filed patent applications protecting basic principles of our technologies.
- Our customers include companies of different size all over the world (US, Europe, Korea, China, Israel, Russia). Between them are major silicon vendors, software houses and end-user product manufacturers.
- We’ve managed to do all the above with no investors so far.
Based on our technological and business development progress during the last two years, I firmly believe that by 2012 Alango will become the major independent provider of front-end voice processing technologies for all types of voice communications. To achieve this, we’ll stay committed to our principals.
Technology perfection shall never stop. What we have today is much better than what we had two years ago and incomparably better than what we have 4 years ago when we made our first big licensing agreement in the mobile phone field. And we are not going to stand still. We have a clear vision of what we need to do to make our portfolio even better, we are doing it and we’ll continue doing it indefinitely. This ensures our customers that partnering with us will allow them creating the best products today, tomorrow and in the years to come.
During the last two years we’ve introduced several unique technologies and we’ll continue doing it. This allows our customers to differentiate their products from competitors, finally giving more value to the end user.
We’ll continue seeing our customers as partners and supporting them on all development stages. A large part of this support will continue to be free of charge. We invest together and we win together.
We’ve just released our first technology (AVQ-Me) for audio in mobile world. There is nothing similar and nothing more useful to mobile music listeners on the market today. We are planning to introduce more this year. On a customer request we can also introduces more conventional stereo enhancement technologies (bass emphasis, 3D) bundled with our unique ones. We’ll do it alone or in partnership with today market leaders. If you are one of them and want to explore cooperation, please, contact me.
In the near future we’ll further expand the range of our hardware solutions. Today we offer universal DSP processing boards; tomorrow we’ll offer small processing modules for specific and general purpose applications and the day after we may even build our own ICs. We don’t know if we do it alone or partnering with other companies. It is not important for our roadmap. We’ll choose the fastest way and we are open to potential partners.
We already have business customers that ordered complete voice communication systems from us. These systems use our unique technologies and know-how to achieve unprecedented voice quality in specific environments. We are considering expanding this trend. In the near future we are going to offer high end voice conferencing and intercom systems for medical, industrial and business applications. We are open for partnership with established companies.
Assistive listening technologies and solutions is another area that will be important to us in the future. Actually, our technologies are already used in Clarity digital amplified phones. However, we have much more to help hearing impaired people. If you are from one of the hearing aids or other relevant companies, we’ll be happy to discuss what we can do together.
The company had no investors so far. Working without investors has its advantages. However, predicting potentially exponential growth in our activities, we may need one to make things happen. If you want to explore the investment opportunities, let me know. We have enough deals in our portfolio already. Working with us you cannot lose, only win.
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