Exclusive: Interview with Lorenzo Di Ciaccio

 

[Interview with Lorenzo Di Ciaccio about his company future in Pedius from present to five years from now. He discusses about technology and the fast past of change of technology. You can check out their website @ Pedius.]

 

What makes your product stand out against others?

Pedius is the first relay service for deaf people that doesn’t require interpreters. We use text to speech and voice recognition technology to convert a chat in a phone call.

A phone call trough Pedius costs as much as a normal phone call, this is our vision: give the same opportunity to make phone call as hearing person can do, at the same price, without a third person involved.

What is the goal of Pedius for the next two years? Next five years?

Our goal is to remove the barriers of communication between deaf and hearing people, bringing new a standard in telecommunication systems.

In the next two years we plan to cover with our service UK, France, Germany, Spain and US. Proving that solving a social issue doing business is possible.

In a long term view we would like to promote the “social business” philosophy. Using technology to improve quality of life and make a sustainable business, not only for the deaf, but for many other kinds of disabilities.

What will Pedius be doing to adapt to the fast pace changing of technology?

Before starting Pedius we were working in IT, so we know how fast the technology is changing. In particular voice recognition and speech synthesis will become every day more accurate. We developed our infrastructure to easily adapt to any change and improvement catching any further opportunity.

Why is this product best for people who are deaf/hard of hearing?

In one word: independence. With Pedius deaf and hard of hearing are not forced to ask help for every day needs, they can have freedom to make important calls such as booking doctors appointments or making reservations or to call family, friends and coworkers.

Of course Pedius doesn’t mean at all to replace interpreters, we plan to develop an hybrid version where the user can switch in real time between the automated system and the interpreter.

Why have you not received customer ratings for your product at Apple Store, but you have for Google Play Store? Why has nobody has written a customer review of your product?

We launched Pedius in November 2013 only for Android, we had a limited budget and decided to start with Android to cover the majority of devices and making Pedius working even on cheap devices. We developed iOS version this spring and released in UK just one week ago. By policy Apple separates reviews and ratings by country for that reason you are not able to see Italian reviews and ratings. We already had the first phone call in UK and hope to receive also feedback and reviews.

Who is leading the organization and what are they doing to ensure to have a technological edge?

2 years ago I quit my job to start Pedius. We decided to become a company following market dynamics to stay always on cutting edge technology. Many social organizations are having troubles getting committed people because often people involved dedicate themselves only during free time. We bet on Pedius all our time and all our experience without distractions.

We have a social aim but we act like a company.

How do you intend to target specific people to use Pedius? 

We would like to start from the community. Deafness affect 1 person every 1000 so every mass media communication is just a waste of money. The community is very well connected and open to innovation such as our.s We don’t have a huge budget but we could have a big value for the users. We trust in our users within the deaf community to promote our service.

When will Pedius be available in all languages? Why is it only available in English and German? 


Pedius is now available in Italian, English and Spanish we plan to include French, German and Portuguese in the next year and having more language in the future. We hope to raise money to speed up new languages introduction

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