What’s next for voice?

In what is destined to be an exciting year for voice technology, and with CES 2019 taking place in a few days time here are a few things to look forward to in 2019…

Context is everything

Smart speakers will get better at understanding contextual signals, and interpreting more complex commands and conversational cues.

Elements such as time of day, location and usage patterns will help devices become more useful and make us more efficient in accomplishing everyday tasks.

Although we will still be able to invoke voice experiences using wake words, we will soon be enjoying more natural and engaging conversations with our devices.

Amazon Echo Dot device on a desk

Sound and vision

The latest iterations of devices include screens, and this opens up new possibilities with multi-modal experiences.

Amazon officially launched APL (Amazon Presentation Language) to developers in October, and this is already being used to deliver images and video to enrich the voice experience.

Rapid progress

As the rate of smart phone sales declines, expect an acceleration of smart speakers adoption. This will also lead to a proliferation of different devices in a wide range of form factors and designs.

VCommerce

Just as frictionless mobile purchases are driving massive changes in the high street, smart speakers will be increasingly used for purchasing.

Amazon reported that there was a three-fold increase in voice purchases over the Christmas period.

Google Home have provided a simple method of donating to charity using devices, and this in many ways can be seen as a test run for increased payment integration.

Getting strategic

Voice technology has rapidly moved from a niche interest for early adopters to being installed in millions of homes, and 2019 will see further shifts into the mainstream.

Progressive brands will use voice technology as a marketing channel, and leverage user data and analytics to gain greater consumer insights.

Successful companies have previously embraced mobile, and those who want to lead the field should start developing a coherent voice strategy.

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