China / Soundai / 29
Chang Le isn’t afraid to compete with giants. In 2016, she founded Soundai in Beijing. Soundai develops software for smart speakers – China’s answer to the likes of Amazon Echo and Google Home. Her technology is used in smart speakers produced by China’s search engine operator Baidu and retail giant Alibaba. The 29-year-old, who studied electronics engineering and information technology, sees voice-controlled applications based on learning algorithms as “the next big thing.” SoundAI is working on developing a system that can also be used in cars. “Driving is a challenging scenario for voice recognition because of the background noises coming from the tires and engine,” says Chang Le. Investors believe in her. Last year, Chang Le raised 15 million dollars in a single financing round.