Most smartphones today come with voice-recognition software: You speak a question into your phone and the results come back to you via the wireless web.
And now Microsoft has introduced "Cortana" – and let me tell you, she's awesome.
Cortana can search the Internet, set up reminders, shift calendar appointments, manage your mishmash of meetings, find restaurants, send text messages, and place phone calls. And she only seems to get better the more I deal with her.
Based on a 26th-century artificial intelligence (AI) character in the smash hit "Halo" videogame series, Cortana made her grand entrance as part of Windows Phone 8.1 – the key new update for Microsoft's mobile operating system (OS).
Microsoft's decision to enter the voice-recognition field means this technology has now passed the so-called "tipping point." By that I mean it's no longer just a cool "nice-to-have" feature – it's an integral part of personal computing.
And Microsoft believes Cortana can advance a tech platform that will change the way we interact with our mobile devices, our cars… and even our homes.
Because we understand this, we have an advantage. We've identified a small-cap leader that plays a key role in just about every aspect of voice-recognition technology, landing it squarely on our "stocks to buy" list.
Voice Recognition: A New Market
I'm big believer in voice recognition. I use it all the time to send text messages to my wife and kids. Ditto when I want to quickly reply to an email on my iPhone.
Not only that, but I also use it in my Acura MDX almost daily. When I want to make a call or set my navigation system to a new address, I just push a button and talk to the friendly female voice assistant.
I got immersed in "voice-rec" technology with the introduction of the Apple iPhone 4S in the fall of 2011, which Apple used to launch Siri (hence the "4S" designation) – the first voice bot truly designed for the masses.
The market has grown from there. Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG, GOOGL) offers a digital voice assistant for mobile phones running its Android operating system through its "Google Now" service. And now Microsoft has entered the fray.
And while each of these three giants has strong entries in the voice-recognition market, none is the kind of "pure play" that offers maximum profit opportunities… like the one I want to share with you now.
About the Author
Michael A. Robinson is one of the top financial analysts working today. His book "Overdrawn: The Bailout of American Savings" was a prescient look at the anatomy of the nation's S&L crisis, long before the word "bailout" became part of our daily lexicon. He's a Pulitzer Prize-nominated writer and reporter, lauded by the Columbia Journalism Review for his aggressive style. His 30-year track record as a leading tech analyst has garnered him rave reviews, too. Today he is the editor of the monthly tech investing newsletter Nova-X Report as well as Radical Technology Profits, where he covers truly radical technologies – ones that have the power to sweep across the globe and change the very fabric of our lives – and profit opportunities they give rise to. He also explores "what's next" in the tech investing world at Strategic Tech Investor.