What do Voice Assistants Offer Customers?
As per Financial Giant – Price Water House Coopers (PWC) Consumer Intelligence Series Voice Assistant Survey, 2018, the general awareness and usability on a daily basis is quite high for Voice services. As per the report, only 10% of the survey respondents have not used a voice assistant. Of the 90%, the majority who have used an artificial intelligence voice assistant, households with children dominate.
An Artificial Intelligence-based Voice Assistant can be defined as “A software that can assist people with basic tasks, usually using natural language. Personal assistants which are automated and updated can search for answers online to a user’s questions through either text or voice.”
The younger and more tech-savvy generations are driving the adoption of new voice-based technology but not necessarily heavy usage. 57% of the voice-based commands or usage are done in mobile phones followed by 27% in laptops and tablets. However, the majority of commands relate to the search of basic answers such as “How is the weather today” or “Search this in Google”, and the bulk of voice assistant users are yet to graduate to more complex and bulky activities such as Shopping Online, etc.
Voice Bots and Customer Experience
Today, Artificial Intelligence led Voice Assistants or Chatbots are revamping the customer service experience leading to the faster dissolution of complaints and more satisfied or amiable users. Also, they increase the overall customer satisfaction score. As per Capgemini, nearly 70% of people, in near future, are projected to use Voice assistant and AI bots instead of physically doing a task such as shopping or going to the bank.
Various Startups are repositioning themselves to better utilize the emerging new technology. The use of AI bot is expected to rise 116% in the financial service sector, 241% in the Hospitality sector and Tourism, 167% in the Energy sector and IT.
Consumers also have a fairly positive view of Artificial Intelligence and are open to using Chatbot for their convenience. As per a survey by Gartner, nearly 80% of the customers see chatbots as providing a higher level of customer service. In the banking sector, nearly 90% of all customer interaction with the bank can be delegated to a Chatbot.
In retail, AI voice assistants are expected to re-modernize the sales channel. As per Juniper, Artificial Intelligence based Voice Commerce is expected to reach $80 Billion by 2023 as well as reduce operating expenses by at least 30%.
This barrier is embracing voice assistance technology for trivial and day to day tasks such as Ordering Food, Grocery Shopping, booking an Uber, etc. This stems from 3 reasons:
1. Lack of trust in the Voice Assistant systems
3. Limited knowledge on the full breadth of capabilities of Artificial Intelligence Voice Assistants.
Voice Assistant Offers
It can perform a menial task such as a quick Google search, Checking the weather, etc., or Complex tasks such as Drawing up a grocery list, Shopping on amazon based on Voice Activity, or even filing for taxes to some extent!
As per Tractica (a market intelligence firm that focuses on human interaction with technology), the unique consumer users for virtual digital assistants (which they define as automated Speech Recognition Software applications or platforms that help humans understand the natural language in both written or spoken form) will grow from more than 390 million worldwide users in 2015 to 1.8 billion by the end of 2021 and the growth in the Voice Recognition Software business is expected to increase from 155 million users in 2015 to 843 million by 2021, revenue is forecasted to grow from $1.6 billion in 2015 to $15.8 billion in 2021.
Apple introduced Siri and it became the world’s first ever digital virtual assistant. It standardized voice assistance on smartphones by launching it with iPhone 4s on October 4th 2011.
Google Now, facilitated by the Android platform, followed. Apple’s iOS also supports it , but with limited functionality.” Alexa” and “Hey google” is a part of multiple households. Alexa by Amazon is part of the Echo and the Dot.
Google Assistant is part of Google Home. Similarly, Samsung has Bixby. IBM has Watson. Microsoft has Cortana on its Windows 10, Xbox One machines, and Windows phones, and Nuance has Nina – which are a few of the products of Speech Analysis Company. By default, most of the voice assistants have somewhat female-sounding voices as a female-led voice has a mass appeal and adoption rate, although the user can change them to another gender.
Voice assistants don’t really “understand” or “comprehend” what you’re saying — they just listen for their “wake word” which is programmed into them. After listening they begin communicating with a server to complete a task with the aid of NLP or Natural Language Programming- a prerequisite of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence.
The main drawback of voice assistants is the Privacy concern of the user. Smart speakers- while waiting for the wake word command from their owner – are always listening. This is communicated to their main server from where they download the required data.
In other words, A smart speaker is always listening and communicating what they listen to on a private cloud-based or traditional server which forms the basis of customer fears. Hence, it is susceptible to hacking.
Voicebots and Future
According to the Voicebot Smart Speaker Consumer Adoption Report 2018, almost 10% of people who do not have a smart speaker, plan to purchase one in the near future for their convenience. The experts predict those voice assistants will improve in many other ways.
An article in The Atlantic Newspaper mentioned that a subfield of Artificial intelligence called computational creativity forges algorithms that can write music, paint portraits, Fill up spreadsheets, etc. These capabilities will help smart speakers Show emotions and help them mature and transform into a human-like entity. This enables Artificial intelligence not to overtake or replace humans, as much debated and feared, but to accelerate development. They technically help organizations streamline operations and seamlessly increase CSAT scores.
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