Is the home speaker the new smartphone? The surge in sales of speaker-based virtual assistants across the US heralds a major wave of retail disruption, one that retailers could quickly find themselves dumped by.
Heard of Google Home? How about Amazon Echo? Microsoft Cortana?
No doubt you are all familiar with the tech giants behind these products, but the products themselves – specifically, the home speaker assistants – are sweeping into homes across the United States at a phenomenal rate.
Analaysis by Adobe Digital Insights shows that outside of the US holiday season, unit sales of voice assistant devices have seen year-on-year growth of 39%, with a great deal of improvement remaining.
The research by Adobe shows that despite the surge in popularity and sales, nearly half (49%) of Americans NEVER use voice to interact with devices. However, 14% are using the devices multiple times per day, and the figure is rising rapidly. The pace of change in machine learning coupled with the colossal investment dollars being pushed at AI indicate that voice-based assistants are the ultimate device of the future. Retailers across Australia need to start factoring this rapid and lasting change into their strategic thinking now or risk being left behind as “voice shopping” takes over the online retail experience.