Voice First: 4 Factors Affecting Market Growth

The voice-based consumer market (Voice First) is advancing and changing rapidly. Stakeholders continue to announce new roadmaps for their products. Integrations and partnerships are regularly carried out. New entrants, looking for the opportunity in the intensive appeal of voice technologies, place their bets in their own offerings. Most offers are mainly in the space of personal assistants, who embrace the voice first. That is, they have an interface for which the input and the primary output are the voice.

As the market continues to grow its ecosystem, consumers are faced with a wider range of choices available. A number of factors will lead to market changes and accelerations in terms of adoption and sale. These factors include 4 points:

Consumer experience with first generation devices: UX is particularly important in the market where repeat brand purchases are the norm. First generation devices often need to address product-related issues (introduction of new technologies). According to a US study of data from the first quarter of 2016 reveal that 54% of consumers will buy another product of the same brand if no problem occurs with the current device or service. Only 31% of owners of products that have two or more problems will buy another product of the same brand.

Businesses must balance the race to establish an early market share with the risk of prematurely releasing a device or voice application that is riddled with software problems. The delay for the Bixby Samsung on Galaxy S8 smartphones reiterates the challenge when launching a Voice First application. This delay will be crucial for Bixby – not only Samsung releases the Galaxy S8 without Bixby, but its rival assistant Google takes its place. The smartphone will therefore offer Bixby features, but with no voice control function.

Amazon Echo and Google Home have proved the appeal of voice-assist devices with their rapid success. Due to the receipt of the market, Amazon has already introduced its 2nd generation devices with Echo Tap and Echo Dot . Google is already in the development of its 2nd generation home device. Thus, new entrants will undoubtedly catch up, but they can also learn valuable lessons from deployments of the first steps, design flaws and user reactions.

Additional purchases: devices such as Amazon Dot have allowed the portability and extension of voice assistants to multi-room experiments. Smaller form factors and lower prices encourage consumers to add additional features throughout the home. The updated Echo (ESP) from Amazon illustrates the anticipation of the consumer’s construction of his ecosystem beyond a single intelligent speaker. With ESP, Amazon has programmed its Echo devices to respond to a user’s command only from the loudspeaker that is closest to the user. More than a quarter use two or more devices in their home. The impact of additional purchases on the growth and potential of this market is dramatic.

New entrants: whether they integrate products with current voice assistants into the marketplace or create their own proprietary solutions, companies enter a competitive area to capitalize momentum. Those who have integrated their products or services with third-party assistants have seen their efforts rewarded. Linkplay , for example, a complete provider of audio solutions, integrated its speakers with Alexa and found a 50-60% increase in sales. New entrants expand product offerings to consumers, address potential gaps in current market offerings, and can further push the adoption curve by addressing consumer needs in a different way.

In addition, industry giants, such as Samsung, who enter the market will be able to leverage their existing customer base. Consumers are inclined to use the voice assistant provided with the device they are using. For example, in the fourth quarter of 2016, the US study found that 50% of iPhone users use Siri. In comparison, only 22% of Windows users use Cortana.

Expanding partnerships (services & products): Partnerships will lead to increased adoption by expanding the reach and utility of voice assistance devices. Google Home recently announced partnerships with more than 10 different smart home products, effectively expanding its smart home footprint. Amazon Alexa currently has 337 skills related to “Smart Life”. As partnerships grow and the list of compatible products grows, voice assistance devices will increase in value propositions that they can offer.

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