Sing-along 'Noraebang' feature added to S. Korea's favorite navigation app

Park Sae-jin Reporter() | Posted : July 7, 2020, 17:27 | Updated : July 7, 2020, 17:27

[Gettyimages Bank]

SEOUL -- People who cannot visit Noraebang, the Korean version of Karaoke rooms, due to concerns over a new coronavirus epidemic can now sing along their favorite songs using T Map, a popular navigation app operated by South Korea's mobile carrier SK Telecom.

Keumyoung, a digital audio system company that makes karaoke machines, said on Tuesday that its Noraebang feature was added to T Map using text-to-speech (TTS) technology that converts digital content including websites, ebooks and texts into spoken language.

T Map's Noraebang feature will read out the lyrics of more than 10,000 songs. Thanks to TTS technology, drivers can keep their eyes on the road ahead while the navigation app reads out lyrics between verses. SK Telecom's artificial intelligence voice assistant, NUGU, embedded into T Map, will help drivers search for a song verbally.

Keumyoung said the new service is ideal for foreign K-pop fans and those who wish to learn how to read and speak Korean. The company will add hundreds of songs every month.

Noraebang, an entertainment facility with separate rooms installed with karaoke machines, has been a popular place to hang out for South Koreans. There are 34,000 Noraebangs, which 
have been designated by South Korea's disease control body as a place with a high risk of COVID-19 infection.
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