Almost three quarters (72%) of smartphone owners use digital assistants, according to a new report from Microsoft . . The results are based on two surveys – one from mid-2018 including an international sample and a 2019 follow-up involving 5,000 US consumers. The study also revealed that 35% of the surveyed population had used "voice search" via a smart speaker.
Main Cases of Use of Assistants. Like many reports covering digital assistants, this one sometimes fails to make a clear distinction between the use of smart speakers and that of a smartphone. However, the report devotes considerable time to adopting smart speakers and use cases.
In the context of this clever discussion, Microsoft introduces the following hierarchy regarding the use of PDAs:
In Search of a Fact – 68 Request Directions – 65% Find a Business – 47% Search for a product or service – 44% Create a Shopping List – 39% Compare Products or Services – 31% Add Items to Cart – 26% Make a Purchase – 25% Contact Customer Service or support – 21% Percentage of comments provided on a product / service – 19%
Some of the answers on this list (for example, the comparison of products or services) suggest that respondents were largely vocal about Use of wizards – not just on smart speakers. Indeed, the absence of answers such as "check the weather" or "play music" (common answers in other surveys of intelligent speakers ) also suggests it.
The study found that 80% were "satisfied" with their digital assistant experiences (most often on smart speakers), while 14% were "neutral" and only 6% were dissatisfied.
A 22% jump in ownership. In terms of ownership of smart speakers, the 2018 survey revealed that 23% of respondents had one. That number has risen to 45% this year. Assuming it's a US-based population, this would mean that about 112 million Americans today own at least one speakerphone smart, with an additional 26% saying that they will buy one this year.
A very interesting conclusion relates to the intention of buying the mark. Amazon Echo grew compared to 2018 and Google Home lost its share of purchase intent. The number of people who say they want to buy a Google Home speaker has risen from 58% in 2018 to 17% this year. It's possible that 58% bought Google Home devices, which is why it's down. The decline is remarkable, however.
The Google Home Mini system has not suffered the same decline in purchase intentions. Finally, 26% of the audience said they want to buy an alternative brand, including Sonos and Apple HomePod, although the report does not specify.
Privacy issues relating to digital assistants. A substantial minority (41%) of respondents said they had "concerns" about PDAs – again, probably smart speakers. When asked to clarify their point of view, the most common answer was "that my personal information is not secure" (52%), followed by "that he's listening to and listening to / or "register" (41%), then "I do not want my personal information". information or data used "(36%). These fears are not entirely unfounded, given recent revelations about Amazon employees listening to Alexa recordings – in an effort to improve voice recognition and comprehension.
The surveys also included purchases made with a digital or intelligent assistant. speaker. Just over 41% of those surveyed said they made a purchase through one or both channels (6.5% said they did not like it). The remaining 59% had not made a purchase, with 27% saying they were interested in making future purchases using assistants. More than half (54%) of those surveyed said they believe digital assistants would help them shop at retail stores five years from now.
Why we should care. Consumers and retailers expect smart speakers (and smartphone assistants) to become an important channel of purchase over the next few years. The activities detailed in the list above indicate that some search behaviors will be transferred to the voice channels over time.
Marketers have clear implications related to voice optimization and other tactics. For example, if you are a local service company, you must perform certain specific tasks in to be able to appear in the Google Home local lists. It is also the responsibility of marketers to experiment with smart speakers to determine the most effective use cases for their brands and content.
Finally, some shopping and shopping experiences can be generalized with smart speakers. The Walmart  voice-mailing experiment  represents a potentially successful vocal business model, involving the creation and replenishment of lists.
About the Author
Greg Sterling is a collaborative editor at Search Engine Land. He researches and writes on the links between digital commerce and offline commerce. He is also Vice President of Strategy and Knowledge for the Local Search Association. Follow him on on Twitter or find him on Google+ .