New Delhi: English Language Speech Assistant or ELSA, a Google-funded artificial intelligence (AI) application launched in India to improve English speaking skills of the Indian Language learning community.
Unlike other applications, courses that focus primarily on teaching vocabulary and grammar, ELSA uses speech recognition technology to help English learners with their pronunciation.
In India, the status of a person is often concluded by knowledge and fluency of English, and for millions, knowing fluent English means a much better chance of employability. A recent report by KPMG stated that the e-learning market in India is expected grow at 42% by 2021.
“With the advent of Reliance jio, increased smartphone and high speed internet usage among the masses, there has been a sudden explosion in demand for English learning platforms. This is where ELSA is trying to fill the heavily ignored but essential gap of correct pronunciation and accent" says Ankit Raj, who is looking after growth of ELSA in India.
ELSA has raised $7 million in March 2019 for its AI-assisted language learning platform that helps people with improving their English pronunciation. Over the past year, ELSA has been on a path of exponential growth. It claims to have made an impact by assisting a community of more than 4 million English learners enhance their pronunciation. As a result, the learners were exposed to better opportunities whether at school, travel or work.
“We are looking to repeat the growth story in India after major success in Vietnam & Japan. India is one of the largest market for English e-learning and we want to leave no stone unturned by going after online and offline channels to acquire customers", says Vu Van, CEO of ELSA.
ELSA wants to be the de facto platform for pronunciation and accent coaching in India, given that English is the only common language among native speakers of all regions, and is predominantly becoming the mother tongue in urban households.