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Listening in.
VIRTUAL ASSISTANCE

Indians are suspicious of voice assistants, but not enough to forgo their convenience

Sangeeta Tanwar
By Sangeeta Tanwar

I write about all things retail

From our Obsession

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Looking at Big Tech as the next Big Oil.

Indians don’t seem to be really concerned about privacy.

About 46% of Indian users feel voice assistants on their devices are recording and listening to their conversation. Users are also concerned about technology companies misusing or outsourcing their personal data to third-parties. Yet, they continue to ignore the threat, reveal, findings of a report published by Mumbai-based digital agency, WATConsult.

The report is based on insights shared by 814 respondents who use voice assistants and reside in top metros such as Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Bengaluru.

Growing usage

The report pegs speech and voice recognition technology market in India at Rs149.95 crore ($22.54 million) as of December 2019. This is expected to grow to Rs210.63 crore by 2020-end.  

Nearly 78% of the respondents said they are familiar with voice recognition technology, according to the report.

Voice assistants in India are widely being used for basic tasks like setting up reminders and alarms. Alongside, the respondents are using voice assistants for advanced tasks including placing a product-service order and booking, said the report.

“With the increased adoption of voice technology, search behaviour among users will change and more individualised experiences will transpire,” said Heeru Dingra, chief executive officer, WATConsult. “The technology will evolve with further advancements and developments such as voice-to-text, text-to-voice, better user interfaces, enhanced data security, and payment mechanisms. These developments will further accelerate the digital business transformation and automation in India,” added Dingra.

Google was the most widely-used voice assistant by the respondents followed by Amazon’s Alexa, and Apple’s Siri.

Respondents are also using a wide array of devices such as smartphones, laptops, and tablets, among others for using voice assistants, said the report.

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