As we head toward a world where data-driven machine intelligence powers conversations between brands and consumers, Indian consumers are now ready for this, frequently using smartphones to interact with brands and coordinate tasks. This has become a routine at millions of Indian homes, indicating a clear trend about voice becoming the next conversational platform between people and devices. Mobile penetration has allowed rapid acceleration among metropolitan Indian online adults in the uptake of wearable devices and other smart technology.
Nearly 54 percent of Indians now use at least one wearable device. The smart home is at a similar turning point: 30 percent use a smart TV, 16 percent use a voice assistant speaker like Amazon Echo or Google Assistant-driven Home, and 36 percent use smart home devices like Internet-connected thermostats or home audio systems. Most of the digital consumers in India today are mobile consumers, doing multi-tasking on the go. Voice has a much bigger role to play in the circumstance, which is further verified by the fact that 28 percent of search queries in India is done by voice, and Hindi voice search queries are growing at over 400 percent year on year. It gives a clear indication that voice will play a bigger role in India’s digital space in the near future.
We already have voice-enabled devices which help us set routines, automate home appliances and provide on-demand information. In terms of devices install base in 2018, it has significantly improved as vendors have shipped a set of new devices ranging from mobile phones, ear pods, TVs and smart speakers with voice assistants feature enabled on them. This novelty feature is really attracting a wide segment of users and obviously, millennials and Gen Z are leading the adoption as they are more comfortable to experiment with new technology. Smart speakers are very popular among the kids who mostly use those for educational content, listening mythological stories quizzing and playing games. However, playing music and setting alarms, asking for information from the internet are some of the popular tasks that Indian users prefer asking to voice assistants. There are still concerns on users spending time with voice assistants as it is yet to get the desired traction in India. However, refined use cases with localized experiences are expected to lead the desired growth of voice-based devices in the coming years.