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Artificial intelligence is reshaping human’s life in many aspects. Among these, smart speakers are one of the most incredible inventions for daily life that can help us improving our lives with their unique features.
Wishing you could have an extra hand when you are in a hurry? or getting tired of taking notes as reminders? You’ll probably consider having a smart speaker such as Alexa, Siri or Cortana to solve these problems.
It’s normal to ask who they are. The answer is those are nicknames for systems of smart speakers, which are also referred to as voice-activated speakers or voice controlled speakers.
In general, these products enable voice recognition and voice interaction, featuring digital and life-oriented assistance in multiple domains.
Two of the digital giants GAFA have provided the leading products in this field, namely Amazon Echo and Google Home. Apple HomePod, Microsoft Cortana and Lenovo Smart Display alike all join this emerging competition.
Improving the efficiency in information acquisition
One of the reasons that boost the popularity of these smart speakers would be people’s change of habits. They like getting things easier and faster.
For example, whenever we need information, we tend to use the internet instead of looking up in physical books.
With growing technology, we are getting used to Siri, and now some of us intensively use voice assistants such as Google Home and Alexa.
More and more people prefer to get information from artificial intelligence products simply using their voices.
As technologies continue to mature, the number of people using it is believed to increase. This is because voice-activated speakers can provide personalized, customized, and refined information services to improve user’s information acquisition efficiency.
Smart Speakers and functional features
Smart speakers have been enabled by an artificial intelligent system and empowered with many third-party services.
They can recognize voices of one or multiple users and help them deal with multitasking easily. It’s more common to play music, read recipes, order food, set reminders, book taxis, find a route, check weather or traffic with these smart speakers at home.
Also, it’s available to make calls or purchases, connect to smart electronic appliances and control smart home devices without touching a screen or button. Your daily routine can’t be easier when you get used to this new tech with all-around services.
Each brand has focused on developing different versions and generations of products to adapt to various scenes.
Improving the happiness Index
Besides bringing convenience to our lives more than ever, smart speakers can also help improve people’s happiness index.
The accompaniment of smart devices can help people who live alone get away from loneliness to some degree. Because using such smart speakers just feels like talking to another human, according to Google’s research on how voice assistance is shaping consumer behavior.
In addition, machines and robots won’t judge as they have no emotion. Therefore, individuals claiming to have social anxiety could feel more confident and comfortable talking to devices.
These would explain the high percentage (68%) of smart speaker users who chat with their voice assistant for fun in a typical week.
Smart Speakers and main challenges
In spite of the rapid development of voice-activated speakers, there are negative factors that affect their popularity.
One reason might be that the products are not mature and attractive enough to compete with smartphones. Another main challenge is customer’s worries about losing their privacy.
The matter is that losing privacy already happens every day whenever you use your laptop and mobile phone.
Using Ad blockers and deleting cookies may help in preventing that from happening, but a lot of us don’t bother to do or haven’t realized of these options.
Besides, many websites Google Chrome, Facebook, Youtube, Windows, microphone, camera and etc., all of these almost daily-used stuff can possibly steal your privacy once connected with the internet.
Some small tests have even been made to question whether Google can hear your voice even when it’s not open and then show relative ads automatically.
While facing many new technologies and services, the question is whether you are willing to exchange for convenience in the cost of giving up some of your privacy.
Do you fancy it? How important is convenience and safety for you? Is it necessary to buy considering the price? Does it speak your language? Are its third-party services working well in the country you live in?
To summarize, the unique features of smart speakers are improving our lives by helping us with many daily tasks.
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Written by: Ziwen Wang.
Optimized by: Adrián Pérez.