Next up on Cheryl’s Medium publication – a look at the cooling wave of digital assistants amid a stalling economy, and what it may mean for voice and multimodal design as an industry.

Highlight from the article

So what’s changed? What led to the brutal layoffs of thousands of passionate Alexa employees? And where do we go from here? From my perspective, there are three main factors that have brought us to this point. None of these inherently means that voice interaction is flawed as a core concept; these are instead problems with specific executions of the vision largely driven by business decisions and not necessarily product design or engineering. Let’s dig in a little deeper on each of these dimensions that brought us to our current inflection point:

  1. LOSS OF TRUST: Overly pushy marketing content causes consumers to discontinue use of product, especially in homes
  2. PERFORMANCE DECAY: Platform fragility and inaccurate recognition due to feature bloat causes consumers to discontinue use of product.
  3. HARDWARE OVERLOAD: Microphone fatigue combined with the slow failure of the first generation of smart speaker devices may be causing a stall in the growth of sales of new hardware in the voice interaction market.

Smart AI speaker Error - Young Woman angry because voice assistant can not recognize her language
Image licensed from ryanking999 – Adobe Stock