The world?s first lip-reading cellphone is being developed by researchers at Japanese cellphone maker NTT DoCoMo. All callers will have to do is mouth their words silently, and the phone will convert them to speech or text. This could put an end to having to listen to the personal details of other people?s conversations in subways, restaurants and on the street.
DoCoMo?s prototype figures out which words are being said by using a contact sensor near the phone?s mouthpiece to detect tiny electrical signals sent by muscles around the user?s mouth. The signals are then converted into spoken words by a speech synthesizer, or into text for a text message or email.