Voice assistants and conversational user interfaces are now the talk of the town – with Alexa, Echo, Google Assistant and Siri virtually becoming family members for tech savvy users. Today, voice interfaces allow you to do more than just ask Siri for a weather update – now you can get your Google Assistant to make a restaurant appointment for you with merely a verbal instruction.
Companies like Google, Amazon and Apple have aggressively pursued this trend to connect with their audiences. Other industries like banking and healthcare and even real estate (through smart homes) are now tapping into voice interface technology to gain market share. This technology looks to grow exponentially in the next few years and tech watchers expect many new improvements soon, some of which are given below.
Voice interface technology has so far focused on hearing users and responding to the question. The next step for the interface is to understand context, which will help them deliver more personalized answers. Personalization creates a better user experience ensuring that the user will be more comfortable with the technology and use it more often. For instance, Google Assistant has led the way in using advanced AI to be able to understand context and location to present a personalized response to the user’s queries.
Complexity: Voice interfaces will become more complex and will have to be integrated across multiple platforms and channels, depending on the industry and user experience. It will be necessary for each brand to consider carefully what kind of voice capabilities will best suit their brand and customers. For example, car manufacturers will need to develop more complex interface capabilities as many people use their commute time to perform key tasks – getting news updates, listening to music, ordering supplies- that can now be potentially accomplished through voice interface.
Why Voice Interface Technology is growing
Experts predict that within the next 5 years, all IoT and most other applications will use some sort of voice technology. The growth in IoT and AI have led to the adoption of a more connected life. People are now comfortable using networks of connected devices like speakers, thermostats, smart homes, smartphones etc., which use voice technology.
This is because voice simplifies technology for everyone. As technological advances grow rapidly, there is a learning curve associated with each. For example, if users want to listen to music via a music streaming service or app, they must learn how to navigate the website, or the music streaming app etc. This can be cumbersome and intimidating for many users, including seniors and others who may not be tech savvy. But now thanks to voice technology in smart speakers, the user can skip all those stages, and simply command the system to play the music.
Similarly, in order to operate and control a smart home, users no longer need to learn how their IoT devices work or interact – they can simply use speech, which is the most natural and seamless way for human-computer communication.
Apart from the benefits for users, tech companies and businesses are looking to use voice technology to seamlessly embed themselves in the user’s lifestyle. Interacting with voice assistants has now been shown to induce a sense of familiarity among users, and an almost emotional response, which was lacking in previous robot interactions. This helps users connect with technology and in turn, encourage customer loyalty.
Voice Technology for Small Businesses
Voice technology need not be restricted to big players; small businesses can consider using voice technology to help them deliver better service and overcome challenges. Voice is now becoming the preferred choice for brands to interact with their customers and vice versa. The millennial generation of consumers is digital native and expect a more personalized user experience.
Voice technology can be used internally to help small business effectively manage their day to day operations. Within the sales teams, executives can access data like sales figures, prices and other relevant CRM data easily and quickly. This frees them up to spend time on sales interactions. Voice tech can also be used to track shipments and streamline customer ordering. Small businesses can use smart speakers as voice activated book keepers.
Digital Voice Assistants are getting more sophisticated with advances in technology. Consumers everywhere now expect a more personalized experience in their interactions with companies and brands, and voice interfaces are a great way to achieve that. Small businesses should consider when and where they can use voice technology to help optimize or grow business.
Tricon Infotech has been a trusted leader in providing customized technology solutions to big conglomerates and small businesses alike. Connect with us today to find out how you can integrate voice interface technology within your business ecosystem.