Virtual Assistant Popularity Growing but Apps Failing

Voice Assistants trendA recent report estimates that there will be more than 30 million voice assistants in US homes by the end of this year.  Consumer Intelligence Research Partners estimate that that Amazon’s Alexa/Echo’s are now in 8.2 million homes in the US. VoiceLabs say that Google Home has sold somewhere between 400,000 and 500,000 devices since it was released. These are huge numbers and they’re continuing to grow. Then you have Google Assistant, Siri and Cortana, the mobile voice assistants, to take into consideration.

Voice Apps Failing to Retain Audiences

One of the main issues with Alexa comes with Alexa Skills, or voice apps. These are small apps that users can choose to enable on their device. Once enables, the user needs to start the app with a set voice command. There are around 7,000 Alexa skills, but user retention is extremely low. The problem is after a couple of uses, the users are not likely to use the apps again. The main reasons for this are due to the skills fail to provide long-term entertainment, they are not of interest to the users or they aren’t useful. Amazon is looking to make improvements regarding the lack of user retention as soon as possible. Another issue is that it’s hard to find the Alexa skills in the first place.

Another finding by VoiceLabs is that users of one device are highly unlikely to buy a competitors device. It seems that once a voice assistant is in the home it’s likely to dominate. If this is the case, Amazon is already winning the race.

Future Predictions

VoiceLabs think that allowing voice assistants to enable calls or messaging is highly likely in the months to come. This is a feature that will be welcomed by users and increase the device’s usefulness. Finally, VoiceLabs suggest that monitisation of the devices is expected.

Have you given thought to how your business can benefit from the boom in voice assistants?  Read our tips on how to optimise your website for voice search, here.

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