2019 is poised to be a breakout year for Voice, as smart assistants increasingly embed themselves in our homes.
By Anand Parthasarathy
Bangalore, January 21 2019: In mid 2018, at the Google I/O conference, in the US, CEO Sundar Pichai gave a sneak preview of a new product called Duplex, that was an amazing -- if scary -- vision of the future. In successive live demos, Google Voice Assistant, powered by Duplex, called up a beauty salon and a restaurant to make a reservation. Not just dialing a number, but carrying out an actual conversation with a human at the other end. The voice reacted in real time to the different options and made a choice on behalf of its user, that demanded dynamic, near-human choices. The person at the receiving end had no clue, he or she was talking to a Voice Assistant. (To hear the actual conversations, checkout a 4-minute YouTube video titled "Google Duplex: A.I. Assistant Calls Local Businesses". For a few days we also carry it in our vtech video spot on our home page )
Google Duplex which is rolling out in select cities in the US, is touted as the missing link between a voice assistant and any business. You want to know if a particular item is in stock at your neighborhood store? Today's Google Assistant will help you with the telephone number of the store. You have to make the call. Tomorrow's Google Assistant, powered by Duplex, will phone up and find out, entering into a lengthy dialogue with the shop owner if required.|
Apple was the first to make voice search mainstream in 2011 when it launched Siri on the iPhone 4S. Since then Google's Assistant, Microsoft's Cortana , Amazon's Alexa and latterly, Samsung's Bixby, have given us a choice: talk, instead of typing our query. From smart homes to smart phones, a compelling case for Voice is being made. Already, one in five Android searches from portable devices, are spoken -- and most of these are from car drivers, where texting is not an option. And multiple analysts concur: by 2020, one in two searches will be through voice.
For recent smart assistant products in India including Amazon Echo Input and Milagrow IoT Alexa see Image of the Day