Voice User Interface: The Future Of Websites
Voice user interface or VUI allows a user to interact with a system by using voice commands. VUI is usually paired with virtual assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant.
VUI was created primarily to allow a hands-free way to interact with devices such as mobile phones and tablets. For example, being able to call somebody while driving without using your hands. It allows you to continue concentrating on your task while assisting you to do other tasks like turning on the lights, reading to you, sending messages and so much more.
In this blog post, we will explore the advantages and disadvantages of VUI and how it can make our lives a lot easier. We will also talk about what sort of appliances you can use VUI with and what the future holds for this kind of technology.
What Are The Advantages Of Voice User Interface?
There are a lot of advantages to using VUI in your life and it can make your day to day a lot easier to handle if you have a busy schedule. Here are a few advantages that we think are important to know about VUI.
Text messages can be sent a lot faster with a voice user interface meaning that you can get your messages sent to your friends and family a lot quicker.
When you are driving or cooking it can often be quite difficult or dangerous to take your attention away from the task at hand. Speaking aloud to your device can be a lot safer and a lot more practical.
It Can Be Used As Assistive Technology
Voice User Interface can often be used to assist those who have a physical or mental disability. It can help them go about daily tasks and improve their quality of living.
A lot of, if not all, interfaces have always required some sort of physical interaction to get them to work or do what you want. This isn’t just with digital interfaces like websites either but with everyday items in the physical world like light switches, door handles and even your mouse for your computer. These all require some form of physical touch to get to work.
For users who have limited motor capabilities, it might be too painful or difficult for them to do these physical interactions. This is why the implementation of voice control can be used to assist those with a disability. It allows them to take part in even the smallest of tasks as they can interact with a system without relying on their touch or motion.
People who have limited or impaired vision can also benefit hugely from the use of VUI technology. Most of the digital world is designed with the thought of sighted people in mind. Text, images and colour are some of the most important aspects of communicating the information on websites. This creates a huge challenge for those with visual impairments.
With VUI technology a user with impaired vision can have the text read out to them along with a description of the images that are displayed on the webpage. This gives them the ability to read webpages and use the internet for all their needs and requirements.
What Are The Disadvantages Of Voice User Interface?
Doesn’t Work In Public Spaces
If you work in a heavily packed office and you’re all using VUI then you’re computer is probably going to get a bit confused. Not only are there a lot of devices in the room that will register your voice command but the VUI might not even understand what you’re saying amongst all the other voices.
Similarly, if you’re in the city trying to get through busy crowds and you need to ask your virtual assistant when the next bus is they might not be able to pick up what you’re saying due to the noise level in the area.
Texting Is More Private
A lot of users would prefer to text over sending a message with voice for a couple of reasons.
Using text is the normal way and it could be difficult to change to using voice
It’s a lot more private to send a message by texting
It Doesn’t Help With All Disabilities
Although VUI can be used to assist a lot of people with various disabilities or impairments. it doesn’t help all disabilities. People who have a hearing impairment could be hindered by voice user interface technology. If the system they want to use is entirely designed around using only voice input and output then those who suffer from hearing loss could be excluded from accessing particular services.
The same can be said with those who have problems with their speech or have some kind of speech impairment. They might not be able to give commands to the system they want to use.
The Future Of VUI
VUI aims to provide all of its users with an immersive experience that is human-like but we aren’t quite there yet. There is still a good bit to go before we create a fully immersive AI. However, the advancements in technology and software have brought us closer than ever before. The research on human behavior and the development of complex algorithms have opened up so many opportunities to allow VUI to grow in the home and the workplace.
VUI In Business
Amazon announced back in 2017 their model of Alexa that was aimed towards businesses. It was going to help employees and business owners to manage their schedule, track their workload, organise conference calls and call clients.
Alexa for Business would also allow employees to access the printer using their voice and to recall figures from the latest sales data. Alexa goes from being the virtual assistant to a virtual secretary and this is only the beginning of how VUI will be used in businesses.
VUI In The Home
A lot of VUI is used within the home and there are new devices to be used with it released every couple of months or so. Smart home devices are slowly bringing us closer to a household that is completely interconnected.
With Google Home, you can control all of the Google devices in your home with your phone. There are over 1,000 products that fall under the smart home category and they range from kettles and microwaves to robotic hoovers and fridges.
We can only imagine what the future of VUI in the home has in store for the user.
If you have any questions, about the voice user interface technology, feel free to contact us and we can see what we can do to help.