Despite being primarily a voice device, the mobile phone is largely controlled by non-voice mechanisms. Keypads and touchscreens continue to act as the primary modes of input. However, handsets now sit on the cusp of full command and control through voice, largely being fuelled as smartphone platforms play catch-up with Apple's Siri. As a result, ARCchart forecasts that 1.8 billion mobile phones with voice control functions will ship globally by 2016, accounting for almost 90% of the handsets shipping that year.
This report provides a comprehensive insight into the growing importance of voice command, control and search on handsets, analysing the impact this shift is having on the entire mobile ecosystem, from platform owners to OEMs and from carriers to web-content providers.
Voice control on mobile devices has long been an aspiration owing to the rich user experiences it enables, but the limited accuracy of voice recognition made it difficult to implement. However, advances in mobile computing power and the imaginative usage of artificial intelligence are now making true voice control on handheld devices a reality. Apple's Siri, currently the most successful Rich voice solution on the market, has woven an attractive tapestry of search, intuitive answer and navigation functions, and ARCchart believes that this has ignited a voice command ‘arms race' in the smartphone market.
This report discusses the differences between Basic voice control function, which include simple voice tags, and Rich voice, which leverages intuitive and artificial intelligence features. Intuitive assistance is a key aspect of Rich voice control and ARCchart see the capability as the latest killer application in smartphones. It combines the power of artificial intelligence with voice search, allowing queries to be posed without adhering to a rigid syntax. ARCchart estimates that 1.1 billion mobile phones with Rich voice control capability will ship in 2016.
The report dissects the voice command ecosystem, which is critical to understanding the nature of the value contributed by the various stakeholders. Mobile phone voice command has led to stakeholders moving beyond their conventional roles - handset OEMs, OS platform providers, as well as cellular operators have plunged themselves into developing voice features, shrinking the space for specialised speech recognition engine developers.
The enthusiasm of these multiple stakeholders is an indication of the growing importance of voice command and control on mobile phones. The report profiles 12 companies making significant impact on the voice command market and assesses the key initiatives being undertaken by influential players.