By Hemangi Gokhale
One of the most entertaining afternoons are those when you play with smart speakers. When Amazon launched its first smart speak, Echo along with virtual assistant Alexa, even the marketing companies were a bit clueless about the impact of the launch of smart speaker. Now years from that, we can’t get enough of smart speakers.
Smart speaker market is booming at a very fast pace. According to Allied Market Research, the global smart speaker market is expected to reach $23.31 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 23.4% from 2018 to 2025. Rise in demand for multifunctional devices, proliferation of smart home devices, and surge in disposable income and greater inclination toward novel technologies drive the market growth. In the future, more U.S. homes will use smart speakers for their day-to-day activities such as making shopping lists and controlling home appliances.
It is often forgotten that smart speakers do much more than play music and enable chat with virtual assistant. They are now actively used on smartphones, tablets, in-car devices, and TV set-up boxes.
Major Market Trends in Smart Speaker Industry
While the world is riding the wave of virtual assistant and smart speaker technologies, China is one of the most crucial aspects to look at. The great of smart speakers has evidently made China, the biggest smart speaker market. What’s more, it has overtaken the U.S. to become of the largest market. China’s largest tech company, Baidu declared the its DuerOS voice assistant had more than 400 million in 2019. With the increasing reach of music to customers through apps such as Spotify, the smart speaker industry will witness significant growth. It is observed the playing music on smart speakers is one of prime request for virtual assistants and one of the major reasons behind the sale of smart speakers.
China’s largest technology and telecommunication company, Huawei recently release a new smart speaker that operates of HarmonyOS and it allows access to apps on the AppGallery. While the design of the new smart speaker is similar to its predecessor, it comes with transparent housing and RGB LEDs to give a gamer-centric look. Moreover, the company has collaborated with Devialet, an audio brand. The smart speaker offers a powerful bass and excellent virtual surround sound.
Another Chinese smartphone company, Xiaomi has announced to launched high end smart speaker. However, it has not revealed the specifications of the product apart from that it will offer dual band Wi-Fi support. This means, it can be connected to smart home products through voice commands.
EPOS, a major audio brand, recently launched EXPAND Capture 5, a new smart speaker for Microsoft Teams rooms. This smart speaker is said to enable professionals to meet the reality of hybrid workplaces and unite coworkers by taking virtual meetings to a next level. Moreover, it is expected to increase productivity regardless of employee’s location. The speaker is developed for meeting rooms up to 8-10 people and it can identify participants by their voice, attributing to their remarks to their name in auto-generated meeting transcript.
Future of Smart Speakers
Since the launch of smart speakers, the technology has been widely accepted without much of a resistance. Despite some issues and bugs with virtual assistants, devices such as Echo and Google Home have found a soft spot in tech-savvy consumers.
The next-generation smart speakers will be more advanced due to advancements in Natural Language Processing (NLP) and advent of artificial intelligence (AI), smart speakers will be able to handle single-line queries. Customers can ask about today’s weather and ask the name of the actor in the TV series you are watching. However, if you want to continue your conversation, it might take some time.
However, with developments in AI systems, smart speakers can understand human conversations and user queries would take the form of conversations that include follow-up questions and open-ended inquiries.
In today’s world, both customers and companies show inclination toward personalization. Users want to experience something unique then they visit a website or interact with smart speakers. Already, smart speakers have customized greetings and user-based recommendations. In the future, this will develop and smart speakers may include dynamic user voice recognition and personalized voices.
However, latency posed by the cloud is still a major issue in smart speakers, especially in developing countries where strong internet connection is still an issue. For every inquiry, smart speaker has to fetch information from the cloud, process it, and then user can get their answer. As more and more customers are using smart speakers and connecting to smart home appliances, the smart speaker companies will have to invest much more in maintaining infrastructure to deal with the ever-increasing load.
Thus, in the future, the smart speaker companies will invest more in decreasing latency and offering personalized experience to their customers.
About the Author
Hemangi Gokhale is a free-spirited woman who believes in exploring, and learning. She is a versatile content writer with 5 years of experience in her kitty. Blogs, articles, PR, website content or social media posts, her experience and creativity come in handy.