Voice-enabled devices are becoming more prevalent in daily life and business. This article explores how voice technology is impacting the IoT landscape.
The Internet of Things has been deemed an emerging technology for quite some time, but as recent numbers indicate, it is on the verge of breaking into the mainstream. Recent market studies
place the number of connected IoT devices worldwide at a staggering 13.8 billion today, with a projection of reaching 30.9 billion by 2025.
The IoT success story has involved some noteworthy facilitators. For instance, big data and advanced analytics have expanded the capacity of IoT systems by enabling them to work with a myriad of inputs. Meanwhile, thanks to artificial intelligence and machine learning, today's IoT setups can predict parameter trends and make proper adjustments even before a change occurs.
However, as AI and big data analytics continue shaping the IoT ecosystem, another innovation is steadily joining the stage. Voice technology has made significant strides in recent years, thanks to factors like the pandemic, advancements in the natural language process (NLP), and an increasingly tech-savvy population.
As voice tech gains widespread adoption, its impact is being felt in the IoT space. In today's article, we discuss how voice is shaping IoT's present and future.
The Rise of Voice Technology
Voice technology has been around since the 1950s, but it has only recently made a significant impact. While the first systems were merely capable of understanding numbers, today's solutions have reached near human-level interaction. MarketsandMarkets
predicts that the voice tech market will grow from $8.3 billion in 2021 to $22 billion by 2026.
Voice technology has flourished because of several key factors. Firstly, voice technology appeals highly to the internet generation, which has gotten used to instant gratification. While apps enable users to access and buy virtually anything they want through their smartphones, voice tech pushes convenience even further by eliminating the need to pick up the phone at all. For this reason, virtual assistants have become a must-have in households worldwide. According to PwC
, 74% of customers are using mobile virtual assistants at home.
Voice technology has also gotten a boost from pandemic-related social distancing and contactless trends, which pushed businesses to turn to voice-enabled app development and create systems that could accomplish the same results without touch-based interfaces.
VoiceFirst.FM founder Brandley Metrock remarked on how future customers will view brands without a voice-first strategy.
"As opposed to before, where voice technology investments merely demonstrated a company's innovativeness, customers may now view it as a demonstration of the company's mindfulness to their health and safety."
Voice Tech is Well Positioned to Disrupt The IoT Market
Voice recognition technology enables humans to interact with their environment more naturally. Voice interfaces are often more straightforward than other interfaces because they do not require manual input.
In the IoT setting, voice technology provides a conducive interface for interacting with machines, devices, and appliances, especially when conversational aspects like speech recognition and text-to-speech synthesis are involved.
Below are four ways voice technology is redefining the IoT landscape today.
1. Smart Home Automation
The typical smart home system comprises various IoT devices that enable convenient remote monitoring and access. Applications like lighting, temperature and humidity control, turning off taps, and playing music can all be achieved remotely with connected appliances and devices.
Voice technology pushes smart home systems to the next level. While users were already pleased with using their smartphones to monitor their homes, voice recognition provides the convenience of accomplishing the same with just their voice. That way, users can get quicker responses from their IoT home system while keeping their hands free to do other tasks.
As voice technology advances, IoT developers will be keen to expand its implementation in smart home settings. Juniper Research
forecasts that the number of home-based voice-enabled devices will reach 275 million by 2023.
2. Productive Workplaces
The pandemic has severely altered the office setting. Now, as companies consider the best way forward for their workers, it has become clear that many employees do not want to revert entirely to pre-pandemic models. According to a recent survey
, 55% of workers would prefer a mixture of home and office working after the pandemic.
Working from home gives employees more freedom. However, many remote workers struggle to convert their homes into conducive workspaces and plan tasks effectively. With voice-enabled IoT, workers can instantly adjust room conditions to match their preferences and simplify tasks like sending emails, setting reminders, and scheduling meetings for easy planning.
Remote working is expected to continue long after the pandemic. Therefore, voice-enabled IoT solutions for workplace productivity will become even more sought after down the road.
3. Contactless Payments
The pandemic has propelled mobile payments to unprecedented heights. According to Forbes
, 69% of retailers saw an increase in app-based payments in 2020, and 94% expect the trend to continue over the next 18 months.
IoT is an integral player in digital payments, enabling users to pay in many more ways than just their smartphones. Voice technology fits right into this ecosystem by providing a faster and more convenient option to make payments. Furthermore, customers can make inquiries and provide feedback without typing, while developers can use voice biometrics to bolster system security.
4. Smart Healthcare
With the pandemic making it difficult for patients to reach their providers, IoT devices and apps have become the go-to care delivery solutions in many parts of the world. Today, IoT solutions can remotely collect metrics like heart rate, temperature, and blood pressure, enabling doctors to monitor patients without requiring physical interaction.
Patients have more reason to smile now that voice technology is finding its way into apps and devices. Smart voice-enabled devices allow users to retrieve information from health monitoring devices, book doctor appointments, set medication reminders and even call emergency services without lifting a finger. For doctors, voice tech enables them to update patient records conveniently and provide personalized, human-level care.
The healthcare industry is set for rapid transformations fueled by the pandemic and technological advances. Looking ahead, voice-enabled IoT will play an even more significant role in streamlining healthcare operations and delivering timely, quality care.
An Exciting Opportunity for IoT Developers and Suppliers
Recent disruptions across numerous industries have led to skyrocketing demand for innovations that improve convenience and make the new-normal more bearable. As a result, voice technology has become a key feature in digital solutions.
All signs point to a bright future for voice-enabled IoT. So, if you are an IoT developer or supplier, you stand to gain a lot from adding voice capabilities to your offerings.
Create a free IoT2Market
seller account and begin exploring the voice-tech applications that are ripe for the taking.