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    Proposed $80m Nuance deal would extend its reach in voice-recognition products for cars

    Nuance Communications Inc., a Burlington technology company known for such voice-recognition software products as Dragon NaturallySpeaking, said Thursday that it has agreed to acquire the Tweddle Connect business from the Tweddle Group for about $80 million in cash.

    This acquisition, which is expected to close in the third quarter, accelerates and broadens Nuance’s participation in the large and rapidly growing market for cars equipped with voice-recognition technology, the company said in a press release.

    Tweddle Connect is an application and content service delivery platform for in-car infotainment systems, including the Toyota Entune and Lexus Enform App Suite. Nuance has a similar product called Dragon Drive that is available in such automotive brands as BMW, Chrysler, and Ford.

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    “The combination of Nuance’s Dragon Drive and Tweddle Connect bridges the current gap between voice, on-board applications, and connected third-party applications and content,” Nuance said. “Tweddle Connect’s end-to-end service delivery platform will be combined with Dragon Drive’s hybrid embedded-connected voice platform to provide automakers a single, turn-key solution that offers voice, natural language understanding, dialog management, expressive text-to-speech, in-car connectivity, apps, content, and dynamic application user authentication – all integrated as part of one holistic offering.”

    Nuance has regularly grown through acquisitions. Since 2003, it has bought about 40 companies, a recent Globe 100 story noted.

    Chris Reidy can be reached at reidy@globe.com.