Providing The Vision-Impaired and Elderly Access to Important Information From the Information Service Department

(Hong Kong, 19 May 2004) ─ KanHan Technologies Limited (KanHan) today announced its subsidiary KanHan Technologies Company Limited (the "Company") and the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region ("SAR Government") have jointly launched the world's first pioneering sound portal project (http://www.soundportal.gov.hk) . As one key initiative in building a digital inclusive society, the sound portal provides the elderly and vision-impaired access to real time information from the Information Services Department, the Social Welfare Department, the Department of Health and the Hong Kong Space Museum.

Approximately HK$1 million was invested by the SAR Government to construct this sound portal system for the 4 major governmental departments. Catering to Mandarin, Cantonese and English speakers, the portal is empowered by the Group's leading text-to-speech technology. The pilot run of the system will last for six month till September 2004. Currently, the sound portal is providing services for the Hong Kong Blind Union, Cyber Senior Network, Retina Hong Kong, Ebenezer School & Home for the Visually Impaired and the Hong Kong Society for the Blind.

Via the portal, the vision-impaired or the elderly in Hong Kong can access real-time information from the four government departments using fixed line telephones or mobile phones. The Group's cutting-edge text-to-speech technology allows callers to quickly and easily hear daily news information from the Information Services Department and other major news stories online; health information from the Social Welfare Department and the Department of Health; and programme schedules and astronomical knowledge from the Hong Kong Space Museum in Mandarin, Cantonese and English languages.

Commenting on the project, Mr. Lawrence Mo, Chief Executive Officer of the Group, said, "It is our pleasure to work hand-in-hand with the Hong Kong SAR Government to launch the first-ever sound portal. The project is not only important to the community, but also a testament to our achievements in technological research in voice access to the Internet. The Group believes that this project marks just the beginning of its collaboration with the SAR Government. The portal is expected to expand its coverage to other government websites and contribute to the global trend in building a digital inclusive society with primary aim to help the under-privileged groups in accessing the information highway."

 
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