Voice-based applications are gaining popularity due to increasing penetration of smart speakers and growing voice searches over smartphones. According to a recent survey, half of the internet users globally use digital voice assistants, and India leads the way with 72% adoption rate. For smart speakers alone, Indian users report a 97% satisfaction rate, which is also the highest in the world.
Enhanced Customer Experience Is The Major Factor For Growth
One of the most important factors for the adoption of voice-based applications is the requirement that companies have for seamless customer experience. To enhance their growth and increase the customer base, organisations have started implementing voice assistant solutions. According to experts, many organisations in India have realised the value of chatbots in customer experience and therefore instead of just using text chatbots, customers are better served using voice bots bandwagon. That way, customers don’t have to go through the hassle of typing their queries.
Indian Enterprises Are Using Smart Voice Applications For Making Processes More Efficient
With the advancement in natural language processing, automatic speech recognition, and artificial intelligence, the business use cases for voice-based chatbots have increased over the years. Experts are betting big on voice becoming the preferred mode of transaction for e-commerce, banking, and payments in the near future, streamlining the business process are the key factors driving the voice assistant application market.
Lack Of Datasets For Regional Languages Is A Challenge
While tech giants see the tremendous value in the voice-enabled smart assistant market, currently the majority of such assistants in India support only English, whereas Hindi and other regional languages remain the dominant form of communication. So if the voice-and-speech recognition market in India has to expand it will have supported by software in multiple regional languages.
User Privacy Is Yet Another One
41% of voice assistant application consumers are worried about trust and privacy, according to a report from Microsoft focused on consumer adoption of voice and digital assistants. All the big voice assistant services and apps reportedly hire humans who assess the voice data gathered from end-users.
These companies look at data as valuable to train deep learning models and this is a complex problem that needs more attention. User privacy laws such as GDPR restrain tech companies to blatantly collect user data without consent, which is good for individual privacy. But, constant violations of user privacy have damaged the reputation and trust users associate with smart voice assistants. For India, the issue of user privacy does not seem to be a big challenge as found by surveys. Regardless, more user awareness for privacy as well as the upcoming Data Privacy Bill will be a challenge for this technology segment to grow.
Some of the early use cases of voice-enabled solutions are limited primarily to seeking information, playing music, accessing customer service, etc. However, with technological advancements in both hardware and software front, one could expect some innovative use cases. Clearly, for a country like India, the technology can make it easy for consumers to interact with applications and web services. This can boost multiple industries, including media, banking, e-commerce, education, healthcare and more.
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Vishal Chawla is a senior tech journalist at Analytics India Magazine and writes about AI, data analytics, cybersecurity, cloud computing, and blockchain. Vishal also hosts AIM's video podcast called Simulated Reality- featuring tech leaders, AI experts, and innovative startups of India.