Dolby Launches Surround Sound Voice Chat Client

Audio technology company Dolby Laboratories has entered the world of video game voice communication clients with Axon, seeking to distinguish itself from the competition by locating chatters in a virtual sonic space with surround sound.

Surround sound chat enables people to position their location and heading in a virtual room, affecting how they hear other people and are themselves heard. However, the feature is not available in the basic free version and requires a $20 annual subscription.

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'Basic' users also have a chat room limit of five people, though if even one 'Surround Pass' subscriber is present, the limit is bumped up to fifty and surround sound features are enabled for all present. Dolby's also offering a thirty-day trial pass to new users.

The Dolby Digital creator has developed its own new codec for Axon, claiming it offers "excellent sound quality while minimizing bandwidth usage" and features including "ambient noise reduction, clip prevention, microphone levelling, and echo reduction"

Dolby is also licensing Axon to be integrated into games, with technology to dynamically adjust users' voices depending on their position and other in-game circumstances. NetDevil's upcoming space MMO Jumpgate Evolution is known to be using Axon.

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