Can Amazon's Digital Assistant Maintain its Dominance?

By Marshia Garcia, | May 09, 2017

Amazon's Echo is a cylindrical speaker with a microphone. (YouTube)

Amazon's Echo is a cylindrical speaker with a microphone. (YouTube)

According to a new report, Amazon continues to dominate in the voice-assistant market. Based on eMarketer's data, 36 million Americans use an electronic assistant at least once a month.

In the US over 70 percent of users choose Echo as an automated assistant. Amazon's Echo is a cylindrical speaker with a microphone. This gadget leaves Google Home, its closest rival behind, according to BBC News. 

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Although some people remain uncomfortable with the idea of getting intimate with an electronic assistant, it is a significant new market. eMarketer, a market research company that provides insights and trends related to digital marketing, revealed that 36 million Americans use a voice-activated attendant once a month. This marks an increase of 129 percent compared to last year.

Amazon has the largest stake in the digital assistant market. The company is said to be planning to release a new device to fend off the competition. A low-quality image of the gadget has been detected on Amazon's personal servers, according to AFTV (a site with a solid track record of leaks). Evan Blass, the king of the leaks, supported the genuineness of the image.

The device would reportedly come with a 7-inch touchscreen that can be used for video calling. It is also expected to come with a feature that can show weather forecast and other data.

eMarketers' analysis implies that once one chooses a brand of assistant for his home, it is quite impossible that he would jump to another brand. Thus, when the "cyberspace of things" eventually booms, Amazon's early lead could start to pay off or it could kick it away.

Geoff Blaber, a CCS Insight analyst, said that Amazon has the advantage of an early start in the voice assistant competition, however, the business has hardly crossed the starting line.

"Those that can maximize customer data, search, artificial intelligence and natural language processing, make it all available to developers to innovate with, and simultaneously walk the privacy tightrope, will be the ultimate winners," the CCS Insight analyst added.

Compared to its competitors, Amazon's electronic assistant is developer-friendly. At present, one can spin an Alexa-enabled Ford and General Electric recently released an Alexa-powered lamp. Amazon is hoping to have Alexa in as plenty alcoves and niches possible for the generation, NLP said. 

However, from here Amazon's market share is expected to only get smaller. eMarketers predicts that Google Home would gorge into Amazon's large market share in the coming year. There is yet to be a standalone Siri and Cortana.

"Amazon will inevitably face market share pressure with Echo as competition intensifies. But it has a far grander vision with Alexa," Blaber noted.

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