Speech vs. Touch-tone: Telephony Interfaces for Information Access by Low Literate Users

Information access by low literate users is a hard problem. Critical information, such as in the field of healthcare,can often mean the difference between life and death. In our research, we have developed and tested various spoken language interface prototypes with low literate community health worker. In this paper, we present results from our research that show that well-designed speech interfaces are preferable to touch-tone equivalents. Additionally, we show that it is especially important to localize the system’s spoken language output for low literate users.