New Business Drivers for Speech Technology Emerge

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For technology builders, it's easy to get caught up in technological minutia. Your job requires it. However, it's important to periodically take a step back and evaluate things on a larger scale. What are customers asking for? What are your organization's current needs? How are technology providers meeting these needs? And how are they planning to meet these needs, moving forward?

One of the things I appreciate about our annual State of the Speech Technology Industry issue is that it gives us a macro look at the industry. With this bird's-eye view, builders and buyers can make informed business and technology decisions that have enterprise-wide implications. Once all involved understand the business reason for buying or upgrading a technology, they're better able to achieve their goals.

ING is a good example of this. The financial services firm wanted to simplify transactions for mobile customers, so it shortened the verification process. It was able to accomplish this by deploying a mobile app with an intelligent virtual assistant (IVA) and voice biometric authentication to facilitate transactions. Alaska Airlines is another good example. Its customers can use an IVA to ask for flight options, book flights, and make flight changes. These efforts can significantly lower interaction costs and improve customer satisfaction rates. To learn about other uses of IVAs, read our report on this category by Phillip Britt.

Often, business needs are driven by developments around them. So it might be relevant for business executives to know that Baby Boomers (a cohort that boasts a population of more than 70 million in the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau) are aging and are requiring more medical attention. Plus, millions of people who didn't have health insurance a few years ago are now covered under the Affordable Care Act. Additionally, according to one source in our assistive technology coverage, "The incidences of stroke have grown and so has the survival rate. Also, people are turning away from the long-held belief that there will be no further recovery six months after a stroke." All of these developments suggest that spending on a variety of different healthcare needs (including speech, hearing, and sight assistance devices) will likely increase. To learn about the latest speech technology developments in this important market, read Britt’s assistive technology report.

In addition to IVAs and assistive technology, we explore the latest developments in speech analytics, speech self-service, speech engine, and outsourced speech solutions in our 2016 State of the Speech Technology Industry issue—with plenty of insights for speech technology builders and buyers.


If you haven't done so already, mark your calendars for our upcoming SpeechTEK conference at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C. (May 23–25, 2016). As in years past, this year’s event will feature industry experts covering a wide range of speech technology topics. SpeechTEK will coincide with our CRM Evolution and Customer Service Experience conferences. If you’re interested in attending all three events, sign up for an All-Access Pass, which gives you access to more than 120 presentations. 

David Myron, Editorial Director


@dmyron on Twitter

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