Digital assistants, the evolution of voice recognition and what it means for brands

Garner predicts that, by 2020, 75% of US households will have a digital assistant in their homes. As consumers welcome digital assistants into their home and it becomes mainstream, voice recognition is being put to the test. With the launch of Amazon Echo and Google Home, which focus on using voice alone, we see consumers are torn, with some consumers being highly hesitant to adopt the idea of talking to machines. This creates a conundrum for brands: should we bring back the screen or focus on a zero interface design?

In our new white paper Future-proofing your brand, our WGSN consultancy team looks into the concerns surrounding Artificial Intelligence and how companies feel they are preparing for it.

What are the tools that are defining consumer interaction with AI?


Amazon Echo Show


Mixed Interface

Amazon has experienced the advantage of being the first to market in the home assistant category and recently launched six new products in an aggressively dominant product release strategy, aimed at making the service more portable. All the products are below $150, making these data-collecting gadgets the most accessible and affordable. Interestingly, the product which is receiving the most buzz is the Spot, which has a small round LED screen, recognising that consumers are not quite ready to rely on solely talking to machines.

Amazon Echo Spot


Distracted Driving

There are high consequences when considering a visual or audio based Artifical Intelligence service in our cars. With more screens entering our cars, studies are revealing the increasing danger of in-vehicle technology. The AAA Foundation’s latest research piece released in October found that drivers using in-vehicle technologies (like touchscreen) took their eyes and focus away from the road more often than those who didn’t.

Until fully autonomous cars become affordable and mainstream, there is huge potential to create distraction-less driving. We are seeing partnerships emerge between automakers and tech giants to find a solution with zero interface design. The Hyundai & Google Assistant blue link will be standard for new 2018 automotive purchases.




Future-proofing your brand 

Today, AI is becoming a real element to our lives. Emerging in different ways, new technologies are competing for dominance to communicate to consumers. At WGSN, we see the potential of interacting with consumers in their home. How will you evolve your brand to compete? Get our teams recommendations on everything from fostering innovation to planning for the rise of AI here.

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