Exploring Data: 100 Million Alexa Devices
Updated: Mar 3
Over the last hundred years, there have been only a handful of new technologies that have truly changed consumer behaviors. The house phone, radio, TV, computer, and mobile phone. Many products have entered our homes, but these few shifted our habits and how we interact with our environments and each other. We offloaded our tasks, entertainment, and communications to them. As the fastest growing platform since the iPhone, voice-activated devices are the next step in this evolution.
Not convinced? According to Voicebot’s Voice Assistant Consumer Adoption Report in November 2018, consumers can now access voice assistants on over 1 billion devices. That’s a lot of voice at work. Alexa is a perfect example of how voice is being embraced by the masses. Amazon’s senior vice president of devices and services, David Limp, recently told the Verge that Alexa is now available on over 100 million devices.
Still, there’s an important distinction between having a device and actively using a device. Access to devices doesn’t necessarily mean they’re always being used. For example, there are technically over 100 million Siris out in the world, but the key difference is that Siri is a pre-installed program that comes with devices. Just because people have access to Siri on their phone, doesn’t mean they’re using it. On the contrary, it may be argued 100 million Alexa devices were intentional purchases and not automatically inherited through a phone.
The fact that Alexa’s distribution has skyrocketed is important to the growth of voice assistants, as Amazon is laser focused on adding value in a very wide range of multi-modal devices. By having the largest device distribution in the US, Amazon has been able to set the tone for how we perceive these devices, and what the most frequented use cases are. There has been a momentum with Alexa’s 100 million installed devices. Nearly 50% of homes that have a device have added a 2nd or 3rd device, and early adopters became early gifters.
While there has been massive distribution, voice needs content maturity. Many of the tens of thousands of experiences on Alexa are similar use cases, and are not leveraging robust features or data integrations. The first iPhone apps we all locally stored were very simple, but fun experiences. It wasn’t until Instagram, Vine, and Venmo came out that we truly understood how flexible mobile apps were as a platform. This untapped area creates an enormous opportunity for brands to allocate time, resources, and creativity to build the future of voice. Similar to how brands emerged to define web and mobile, brands need to be thinking about the lifestyle of device owners, and what touch points are occurring throughout the day. Where can your brand ad value, or reduce friction?
Feel free to reach out to brainstorm on where your brand may fit in or what feature sets could drive value for your business.