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Showing posts from February, 2017

Voice UX: Ideas For A Voice App Quality Metrics Framework

BackgroundIn the midst of the ongoing hype around emerging voice-based Virtual Assistants (including Virtual Advisors, Virtual Companions, etc.), there is a crucial aspect that has been somehow pushed to the backburner and largely overlooked by the recent media analysis. That is indeed the overall voice UX quality, and particularly the usability aspects of the 1000s of skills, actions and voice apps already released or being offered to the public. Compared to the more traditional user interface paradigms such as CLI, GUI, etc., the lack of attention to the qualitative aspects seems to oddly suggest the naive belief that the voice user interface by itself could and should be considered enough to maximize automagically the quality of the user experience of any given application or product.

We all had our share of bitter experiences using the clumsy IVR (Interactive Voice Response) systems. Some of us would recall that the level of frustration has started dampening with the increasing imp…

Voice UX: Busting The Myth To Save The Soul

The unplanned and reportedly rapid growth of Amazon Echo line of products, and the sequel of similar devices crafted by Google, Samsung, and a number of other brands during the last couple of years or so have generated a crescendo of apparent public enthusiasm for"Voice First"appliances. 

The particular hype around the Amazon and Google voice gadgets has offered an unexpected spotlight to marketers and a number of self-styled specialists and voice-UX advocates to try making sense of this emerging consumer market segment. As of now, only a few usage-related surveys have surfaced with unknown methodology therefore with none or very limited value for any serious analytical consideration. Even the statistics related to the "actual" number of sold units by each vendor could not be used as an objective criterion of measurement given that their ad hoc leaks follow consumer market arousal tactics rather than target a desired and better public knowledge. Additionally, the su…

Mobility vs Ubiquity: A Twisted Confusion

In the middle of the ongoing enthusiastic debate around the so-calledDigital Assistantsandconversational UX, it is not difficult to realize that two important words of the current technology lexicon are used or implied as if they were synonyms:MobilityandUbiquity.

These words are not at all equivalent. Yet, apps design, investment decisions, strategic planning efforts, and end user device engineering are being made as if these words expressed the same concept. You may just ask: Is this only a question of exegesis and linguistic pedantry, or there is something a lot more critical that has to be revealed and discussed? 

First things first. According to the American Heritage Dictionary, mobility means “the quality or state of being mobile,” while mobile is any entity "capable of moving or of being moved readily from place to place", that is, throughout the physical environment. On the other hand, ubiquity is defined as “existence or apparent existence everywhere at the same time,…