Voice assistants-What’s listening now? [MetaFAQs]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, March 1, 2018

Among voice assistant users, Apple AirPods have the most recent use of a listening device, with 78% having used it on the day we surveyed them. This high active-usage rate is closely followed by Apple notebooks or desktop Macs.

Android smartphones rank last for this most-recent-use measure, although rank 1st for having been used within the prior week.

This is based on the MetaFacts Voice User Profile survey conducted in February 2018. This survey was conducted in late February shortly after the release of the Apple HomePod, so too soon to measure the impact of Apple’s new smart speaker on the marketplace.

Observations

We’re in a time of experimentation, as technology users are finding their voice. The novelty of voice-control is still fresh, and it remains to be seen whether Voice Assistants will be regularly used by more than a few tech enthusiasts.

Voice Assistant use has reached a greater share of the public’s attention, especially following Amazon’s aggressive push into Smart Speakers and enabling Alexa across a broader range of devices. Similarly, Microsoft’s Cortana, Google Assistant, and Samsung Bixby have garnered renewed attention, and are slowly starting to come into everyday use.
Measuring recency of use is an important indicator of true usage levels. It’s one thing for consumers to play with the features of their new technology devices. It’s another thing for them to incorporate something like Voice Assistant use throughout their day.

Related research results

The MetaFacts Voice User Profile includes other related analysis, including:

  • The topics Voice Assistant users ask about: weather, scheduling, music, entertainment, home automation, and more
  • Which Voice Assistant systems are being actively used, on which platforms, and which segments they are attracting
  • Which listening devices are being actively used – from Smart Speakers to Smartphones and Headsets
  • Where Voice Assistant users will – and won’t – do their talking: in restaurants, driving, while walking, and many other locations and settings
  • How well – or poorly – users experience their Voice Assistants, and how performance metrics vary by system and listening device
  • How many adults are active Voice Assistant users, how many are former users, and how many have never tried one
  • Reasons given why consumers have never used a Voice Assistant, as well as why former users aren’t currently active users

Source

The information in this MetaFAQs is based on a survey of 525 online adults during February 2018 as part of the MetaFacts Voice User Profile. The study universe included active Voice Assistant users, former Voice Assistant users, as well as consumers who have never used a Voice Assistant.

About MetaFAQs

MetaFAQs are answers to frequently asked questions about technology users. The research results showcase the TUP/Technology User Profile study, MetaFacts’ survey of a representative sample of online adults profiling the full market’s use of technology products and services. The current wave of TUP is TUP/Technology User Profile 2020, which is TUP’s 38th annual.

Current subscribers may use the comprehensive TUP datasets to obtain even more results or tailor these results to fit their chosen segments, services, or products. As subscribers choose, they may use the TUP inquiry service, online interactive tools, or analysis previously published by MetaFacts.

On request, interested research professionals can receive complimentary updates through our periodic newsletter. These include MetaFAQs – brief answers to frequently asked questions about technology users – or TUPdates – analysis of current and essential technology industry topics. To subscribe, contact MetaFacts.

Usage guidelines: This document may be freely shared within and outside your organization in its entirety and unaltered. To share or quote excerpts, please contact MetaFacts.

Are most hearables being used by young males? [MetaFAQs]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, February 13, 2017

Wireless headsets have been available for more than a decade, and are strongest among two age and gender groups. These hearables-active groups also have above-average shares of VR Headset early adopters.

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The strongest segments for active hearables use include younger males – age 18-44 and youngish females – age 25-34. Penetration is above one in four among males 25-34 (27%) and among males age 35-44 (26%). Among females, hearables usage peaks among females age 25-34, at 15%.

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Looking ahead, we expect these same age & gender groups to continue as the strongest users of hearables and don’t expect other segments to be as keen on hearables.
These age & gender segments are in some of the most-active life stages, with the highest levels of presence of children, full-time employment, and household income. These sociological factors correlate strongly with higher demand for home entertainment, game-playing, and streaming music listening. Also, they are the strongest age & gender segments in tech spending for devices and services.

These age & gender segments are also above-average in their use of voice assistants such as Apple Siri or Microsoft Cortana, and hearables help to use these with the greatest of convenience.

In other words, many of these youngish adults are looking for a way to listen to what they choose to listen to, and for a way to be heard, if not by friends or associates, at least by their own digital assistants.

About MetaFAQs

This MetaFAQs is based on the TUP/Technology User Profile 2016 survey.

MetaFAQs are answers to frequently asked questions about technology users. The research results showcase the TUP/Technology User Profile study, MetaFacts’ survey of a representative sample of online adults profiling the full market’s use of technology products and services. The current wave of TUP is TUP/Technology User Profile 2020, which is TUP’s 38th annual.

Current subscribers may use the comprehensive TUP datasets to obtain even more results or tailor these results to fit their chosen segments, services, or products. As subscribers choose, they may use the TUP inquiry service, online interactive tools, or analysis previously published by MetaFacts.

On request, interested research professionals can receive complimentary updates through our periodic newsletter. These include MetaFAQs – brief answers to frequently asked questions about technology users – or TUPdates – analysis of current and essential technology industry topics. To subscribe, contact MetaFacts.

Usage guidelines: This document may be freely shared within and outside your organization in its entirety and unaltered. To share or quote excerpts, please contact MetaFacts.

How many connected adults use hearables? [MetaFAQs]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, January 11, 2017

For ears, it’s an exciting time in the tech industry.

Hearable technology – audio-oriented wearables spanning wireless Bluetooth headsets to VR headsets – have received a fresh round of media attention. This has stemmed from substantial recent investment in new ventures such as Oculus VR along with a wider range of product releases.

Currently, one in eight US connected adults are regularly using a hearable device – either a wireless Bluetooth headset or VR headsets. This level of use is broad enough to represent great potential opportunities, yet not broad enough to sustain many competitors.

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The primary current use case for Bluetooth headsets is for phone calls, as has been the case for more than a decade. Apple is leading the charge to change this with their Airpods tightly integrated with iPhones, in a bid to help popularize voice-controlled usage. Voice assistants such as Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, Microsoft Cortana, and Google Now promise to radically shift how users interact with their technology.

VR headsets are primarily being used for immersive games and reaching a slightly different segment than Bluetooth headsets.

About MetaFAQs

This is based on our most recent research among 7,336 US adults as part of the TUP/Technology User Profile 2016 survey.

MetaFAQs are answers to frequently asked questions about technology users. The research results showcase the TUP/Technology User Profile study, MetaFacts’ survey of a representative sample of online adults profiling the full market’s use of technology products and services. The current wave of TUP is TUP/Technology User Profile 2020, which is TUP’s 38th annual.

Current subscribers may use the comprehensive TUP datasets to obtain even more results or tailor these results to fit their chosen segments, services, or products. As subscribers choose, they may use the TUP inquiry service, online interactive tools, or analysis previously published by MetaFacts.

On request, interested research professionals can receive complimentary updates through our periodic newsletter. These include MetaFAQs – brief answers to frequently asked questions about technology users – or TUPdates – analysis of current and essential technology industry topics. To subscribe, contact MetaFacts.

Usage guidelines: This document may be freely shared within and outside your organization in its entirety and unaltered. To share or quote excerpts, please contact MetaFacts.