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BizReport : Trends & Ideas archives : May 22, 2017

Number of installed digital assistants to exceed earth's population by 2021

Technology research firm, Ovum, forecasts that the installed base of digital assistants will be on a par with the population of the earth by 2021, with Google dominating the voice AI-capable device market.

by Helen Leggatt

Within just four years, Ovum predicts the number of installed digital assistants will exceed 7.5 billion - that's the current population of the earth. Come 2021, the earth's population is estimated to reach over 7.8 billion.

Google Assistant is predicted to dominate the market with a 23.3% share followed by Samsung's Bixby (14.5%), Apple's Siri (13.1%), Amazon's Alexa (3.9%) and Microsoft's Cortana (2.3%).

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"Ultimately, a digital assistant is just another user interface. It will only be as good as the ecosystem of devices and services that it is compatible with. Partnerships between tech giants and local service providers will therefore be key differentiators" says Ronan de Renesse, practice leader for Ovum's Consumer Technology team and author of the report.

"There is a disconnect between the 'know-it-all, do-it-all' approach that current digital assistants are aiming toward and the highly personalized virtual assistance experience that consumers have dreams/nightmares about. Whoever can bring personal consumer data in a secure, non-creepy way to digital assistance will be able to bridge that gap and capture most of the opportunity."

According to recent research from Parks Associates, households in the U.S. have been quick to adopt digital assistants. Penetration rose from 5% of U.S. broadband households in the final quarter of 2015 to 12% in Q4 2016.

U.S. households have been taking to digital voice assistants faster than they typically adopt new consumer electronics, according to new market research from Parks Associates. Voice assistant penetration rose from 5% of U.S. broadband households in 4Q 2015 to 12% in 4Q 2016, researchers said.

"In the past five years, voice control and voice-based technologies have experienced massive growth in the consumer market, igniting the competitive landscape among current and emerging smart home players," said Parks Associates research analyst, Dina Abdelrazik.

Tags: AI, artificial intelligence, digital assistant, research, technology

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