U.S. Consumers Use Voice-Activated Tech More Than The Rest Of The World

49 percent of U.S. consumers use their voice assistants on a weekly basis, compared with 31 percent of global respondents, according to a joint JWT, Mindshare, Innovation Group study.

When it comes to the growth of voice-activation for everything from search to restaurant reservations, U.S. consumers have been more enthusiastic adopters compared to their counterparts in other countries.

About half of U.S. participants (49 percent) in a survey among WPP Group agencies (via eMarketer) said they use their voice assistants on a weekly basis, compared with 31 percent of global respondents.

The disconnect between U.S. users and the rest of the world appears to rest on the differing levels of satisfaction with the experience of voice-activation.

The survey, conducted by J. Walter Thompson and its research arm, The Innovation Group, along with Mindshare Futures, 18 percent of international participants said they had used voice-activation  just once or twice, versus with 10 percent in the U.S.

The varying amount of usage between the U.S. and the rest of the globe may have to do with the varying amounts of “intelligence” between the main voice-activated assistants themselves.

While Apple has made long-awaited improvements in Siri, the current battle for the connected home is between Amazon and Google, as Apple’s Homepod smart speakers won’t be shipped until December.

In looking at the range of intelligence between the two dominant voice-activated platforms, a 360i study found that Google Home is six times “more effective” than Alexa.

“We can already see a consumer appetite for voice assistants to be able to understand them more fully — 60 percent of smartphone users agree that ‘if voice assistants could understand me properly and speak back to me as well as a human can, I’d use them all the time,” the WPP agencies say in their voice-activation report.

“People want the assistant to know their every preference and deliver an experience that caters to their every whim. As one of our respondents put it, ‘I’d like voice technology to understand me on the level that humans understand each other.’ Around a third (32 percent) of smartphone users are excited about a future where ‘my voice assistant will anticipate what I need and take actions or make suggestions.’”

About The Author
David Kaplan David Kaplan @davidakaplan

A New York City-based journalist for over 20 years, David Kaplan is managing editor of A former editor and reporter at AdExchanger, paidContent, Adweek and MediaPost.