AI Voice Technology Is Not a Trend, But the New Shift of IT Paradigm

Voice Technology Is Not a Trend, But the New Shift of IT Paradigm

A new revolution has already been announced, even if you have been skeptical about the voice technology before, the figures are quite eloquent. Canalys reported 187% worldwide market growth in smart speaker shipments in the second quarter of 2018 and 137% growth is predicted for the 2019. So a new eon of voice-enabled devices can be regarded open, and the former trend of voice technology implementation can already be acknowledged as a major shift happened in the digital world recently.

Why does the AI Voice Technology Gain popularity?

Every generation is characterized differently, and from the IT trend adoption viewpoint as well. At present, it is the millennials, who are using voice technology much more than other age groups. The eMarketer report claims that practically twice as many millennials interact with voice assistants than Generation X representatives. It's around 30 million vs 15.3 million if compared monthly. The usage gap is predicted to grow even more over the next 3 years.

To figure out the prospects, let's first delve into the history of the technology.

eMarketer investigation

The Evolution of Voice Technology

The first speech recognition systems, IBM's Shoebox and Bell Labs' Audrey, can be traced back to the 1950s. Naturally, they recognized little words and phrases and were limited in their capabilities. Audrie was the first. It recognized only single voice digits spoken aloud. It was initially intended for hands-free dialing on the telephone. Almost a decade later, IBM launched its Shoebox. In addition to digits, it recognized 16 words. As the decades passed, AI voice technology advanced along with computing power, data processing, and new algorithms' development.

In the 1970s, the American DARPA (Department of Defense Advanced Research Project Agency) started the SUR (Speech Understand Research) program. As a result, the “Harpy” speech system was created in 1976. It could understand over 1,000 English spoken words. Still, it was limited in the ability to understand natural language. Also, the first commercial application of IVR (interactive voice response) was launched.

In the 70s-80s years of the previous century, the HMM (Hidden Markov Model) development improved speech recognition significantly. Instead of just looking for familiar sound patterns, HMM considered if the unknown sounds could be words.

90s -2000s brought the introduction of PCs and the advent of the internet. It enabled the more advanced speech recognition systems and voice AI technology development. DragonDictate was the first consumer solution that used discrete dictation methods. However, the user had to pause after each word. In 1997, Dragon Systems released Dragon Naturally Speaking. It was the first continuous speech recognition tool to transcribe speech into texts. Also, the early virtual assistants activated by voice appeared.

Since 2010, the rise of ML and AI in voice technology has enabled the creation of sophisticated systems. The decade started with IBM’s Watson. Then followed Apple's Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, Amazon's Alexa, and Google Assistant. The technology has skyrocketed in this period. Today we see cutting-edge versatile software products.

However, the launch of GPT chat opens even broader prospects for voice AI systems. They have the potential to improve their capability of complex queries understanding and more human-like responses. It also leads to creating more natural, realistic, and personalized interactions with virtual assistants. It means increased user satisfaction and engagement.

What Makes Voice so Popular?

It’s actually the technology for everyone, which makes the users feel natural. People expect conversations and actions, so their voice queries are often more precise and action-oriented. Daily routines do not prevent the users from accessing their devices and using voice assistants, the latters in their turn can be accessed anywhere and at any moment.

Besides, it’s easily integrated with other devices and powered by Artificial Intelligence, it gets smarter while used. So it does not require developing specific custom applications.

AI Voice Technology — What Actually Is It?

Speaking about Alexa, Bixby, or Siri, we, in fact, speak about the interface, covering multiple software layers, from voice recognition through AI to voice-enabled applications. In fact, voice technology is the combination of IoT (devices and gadgets), AI (services), and UX (interaction) resulting in a hands-free technology which to a great extent still resembles science fiction.

How is it Used Right Now?

Voice technology has already become an indispensable part of modern life and is used in various spheres from logistics to government. It’s not a product anymore, but an experience reshaping the usual state of things.

Automotive can be called the pioneering industry accepting the new technology and Ford should be mentioned here in particular. Already in 2007, the company launched Sync. The system of communication and entertainment. It allowed drivers to make phone calls and manage music on the go.

The automotive industry integrated Voice AI in car showrooms to answer queries, analyze customer feedback, provide vehicle specifications, and even schedule test drives. In logistics, voice AI could be used for route optimization and navigation. It also facilitates fleet management and communication between drivers and dispatchers.

Healthcare. Here we can speak about Alexa. It automates appointment scheduling, reminders, and follow-up calls with voice assistants. They can give quick and accurate responses to commonly asked questions and track patient's health remotely.

It can also answer basic health queries and describe simple treatments. It's an epinephrine auto-injector that features voice commands for administering the drug to patients with an allergic reaction.

Hospitality. Echo devices can nowadays be met in hotel rooms. They allow guests to use speaker directions to adjust certain parameters - lights, temperature, air conditioning, and music. Hotels also hope to soon adopt concierge-level services voice-powered.

Financial Sphere. The financial sector can automate repetitive tasks. Voice AI assistants can handle customer verification and inquiries. They help with financial transactions, instruct on credit card usage, etc. There are already applications, which allow users to make payments via voice. Alexa is now able to provide some answers to financial and economic questions.

Retail. Retailers integrate voice AI to make cold calls, process orders, and provide real-time updates of inventory. Voice AI-powered shopping assistants advise products and goods based on customer preferences. They help customers find goods, compare prices, and complete purchases.

Real estate. Agents use Voice AI for client follow-ups and property inquiries. Also, voice systems can deliver accurate property data and answers to common questions.

The telecommunications industry. It uses voice AI in its call centers. It helps analyze customer feedback and redirect calls to the most competent representative. It ensures faster problem resolution and minimizes consumer frustration.

Travel and hospitality. Voice-activated virtual guides and concierges are an indispensable part of travel and hospitality. They provide personalized recommendations, handle customer inquiries, make the due bookings, and assist travelers throughout their journey.

Education. Voice AI-powered virtual tutors can adapt to individual student needs. Such tutors provide personalized learning. They can also offer instant feedback, grade students, and track attendance. It allows educators to focus on more important tasks.

Manufacturing industry. Voice AI assistants provide real-time inventory level updates and enhance supply chain management.

Government. Local and central governments also use the technology. Los Angeles, Mississippi, and Utah are developing skills for Alexa at the federal level. GSA’s Emerging Citizen Technology is at the same time researching solutions for making government services accessible via digital assistants. It helps streamline public service delivery, automate routine tasks, optimize resource allocation, and provide instant access to essential data.

What is the More Practical Application of the Technology?

However, voice technology has a more practical application. It is quite accessible to everyone today not only in the consumer realm but also for business usage. It allows giving orders and commands to the teams and employees, dictating notes, looking up and sharing information, monitoring analytics, scheduling meetings, managing phone messages, dialing in into conference calls, etc.


The benefits of voice technology application for business needs are quite obvious:

  1. Improved information sharing — makes the data accessible to everyone and helps all levels of the company be more efficient
  2. Easier documentation and note-taking
  3. Better productivity due to multitasking — you have your hands free for certain more important tasks, than simply taking notes or sending emails
  4. More free time for administration tasks
  5. Automation of routine processes through simple voice commands equipment can be controlled and adjusted, broken devices reported, meetings set up and time saved


So, nowadays, voice AI technology opens many opportunities for businesses and not only. It is used for:

  • Customer service. Chatbots, voice assistants, and speech recognition systems provide automated responses and immediately engage users. They guide them in problem-solving and handle standard transactions. Thus, they enhance the customer service experience. In such a way, the reliance on live representatives decreases.
  • Voice commands for administrative duties. Administrative functions can be enhanced through AI voice systems as well. You can set up meetings, conduct research, address and respond to user inquiries, etc.

Users can also confirm, alter, or cancel appointments using voice prompts.

  • Marketing activities and promotion. Voice AI can be used for customer outreach and engagement. You can produce the necessary content: podcasts, posts for social media, high-quality videos, ads, white papers, e-books, and much more, and direct it to your customers. What’s more, AI allows for crafting marketing messages, and audio and video content in different languages. So, you can diversely repurpose the content you have.
  • Digital Learning. Educational or instructional content can be produced with the help of AI-created voices. You can also turn text content into audible speech, and translate videos into different languages. Moreover, language students can be trained in pronunciation drills with voice AI technology. They can get immediate feedback to enhance their linguistic proficiency.
  • Entertainment. Ai voice generators can produce lifelike voiceovers for video games and animations. In the music domain, AI-produced voices can craft new musical pieces and songs, narrate tales, and much more.

What are the Best Speech Recognition Products by Now?

There is already many tools, which allow comfortable and free usage of a voice recognition technology for business purposes. Let's check what AI technologies go into voice recognition.

The giants of the IT world such as Google, Microsoft, and Apple as well as smaller companies introduced speech recognition tools.

Microsoft has fully integrated speech recognition into Windows 10 desktop OS. It allows you to give voice commands. It also provides you with the opportunity to dictate text for documents. Windows Speech Recognition is activated on the PC Control Panel.

Dictate, is an add-in for MS software designed by Microsoft’s R&D group. The product offers to type using speech in Word, Outlook, and PowerPoint.

Google offers users a free speech recognition dictation facility in Google Docs. The usage of the option is only restricted by Google Documents and Chrome browser. However, some iOS and Android devices also allow such an option.

Dragon is the key player in the field of voice recognition software. It provides a wide range of high-standard products. What is important, it utilizes ‘deep learning’ technology. So the software achieves better accuracy the more you use it. It learns your personal vocabulary and accent and adapts to the background. The product provides full dictation possibilities and verbal commands for your PC control.

Braina is one more solution which recognizes speech. It is built for dictation purposes as well as an all-round digital PC assistant. Braina can implement variable custom commands. It supports 90 languages and demonstrates impressive possibilities of speech recognition.

The technology is still innovative and evolving. At present, the solutions that do work in this space are only figured out. However, it’s already exciting to see how things get done easier.

What are the Challenges?

Implementation of any innovation always faces a number of challenges. The main challenges related to the adoption of the technology are security and accuracy. The users want to be sure that their audio-recorded files are safe and private. Though there is no «incognito mode» for voice searches yet, the developers should consider creating some of that kind. Besides, non-native speakers often struggle to be understood. So, improving the speech recognition technology is still an important task.

Moreover being revolutionary voice technology makes the developers and businessmen rethink everything and it’s the greatest challenge.

The existing content, product design, marketing strategies, partner relationships, and even organizational structure should be altered. However, it’s worth it, AI-powered voice technology could help physicians seeking diagnoses, HR managers search for the right candidates, engineers check the available materials and solutions.


What AI voice technology is and its significance in modern times?

AI voice technology creates human-like speech with the help of high-tech methods: machine learning and advanced algorithms. It can convert written text into spoken words. Thus, it allows electronic devices and PCs to interact with their users by employing speech. As we mentioned above, the significance of this technology is that it’s reshaping the usual state of things. The primary applications of AI voice technology are customer service, administrative functions, marketing activities, and promotion, education, and entertainment.

How accurate are current voice recognition systems, and what factors can affect their performance?

Modern speech recognition systems demonstrate extreme accuracy, between 90 and 95%. However, it may vary across different dialects, with fluctuating speech rates, and linguistic complexities. So the following accuracy metrics are applied to evaluate voice technology AI system performance: WER (Word error rate), real-time performance, usability, and user experience, adaptability to accents and dialects, noise and environment robustness, language and vocabulary coverage, speaker independence, computational efficiency, integration and compatibility, continuous learning and improvement. You can enhance the accuracy of the system, and its adaptability over time by improving each of the aspects mentioned above. Additionally, provide ML algorithms for continuous learning from errors and user interactions.

What industries are currently utilizing AI voice technology, and how is it enhancing their operations?

The technology is primarily utilized for virtual agents’ creation. Such assistants can provide certain information, answer queries, and perform tasks without human intervention. Industries that use AI voice technology nowadays are multiple: healthcare, financial sector, retail, real estate, automotive, travel and hospitality, manufacturing, education, and government.


As you can see voice nowadays reshapes industries so it’s vital to test the waters now. Whenever there is a shift of paradigm in the digital sphere, the enormous opportunities open for the creators and investors.

Gartner predicts that in the short term 30% of human-technology interactions will be realized through conversations with smart devices, long-term prediction is even more beneficial, such opportunities are not offered often, so you can seize the moment and consider a startup or business optimization based on voice technology.

Having long-term experience and wide expertise in the web and mobile development, Stfalcon team is ready to face the challenges of voice technology implementation and develop a revolutionary product for you. Let’s do it!