A new software app Sandesh Pathak was developed to help the illiterate farmers. The app uses text-to-speech method to help the farmers.
This application has been jointly developed by C-DAC Thiruvananthapuram , C-DAC Mumbai, IIT Kharagpur, IIT-Madras and IIIT Hyderabad.
Features of this app
- It takes the received SMS message as input
- It then produce content of the SMS message in form of a speech as output
- It supports five Indian languages — Hindi, Tamil, Marathi, Gujarathi and Telugu with options to select language
- The TTS engines of all these languages have been tested on the agriculture domain-related texts and fine-tuned accordingly
- It provides options to choose speed of the voice as normal, slow, slower, fast and faster.
- It can be downloaded from the Appstore of the Mobile Seva Project of government of India.
Content of SMS
- advice about dealing with problems such as fertilizer, insect, weed and disease management
- updates on latest technology
- weather forecast information
However, the app has its own limitations. It is not equipped to read out bilingual messages.
In Phase two, following activities would be undertaken:
- To develop bilingual app.
- To include 13 languages such as Malayalam, Kannada, Rajasthani, Assamese etc.
- To include 13 flavours of English (with regional accents).
- More institutes will be roped in IIT Guwahati, IIT Mandi, SSN College Chennai, DA-IICT Ahmedabad, University of Guwahati and IISc, Bangalore.
The app is part of the project launched by the Union Government to help farmers read messages. This new application will enable SMS messages to be read out loud thus facilitating their understanding.
The app was developed because farmers are not able to read the received advice in the form of SMS and as a result they are unable to use the advice.