Is the Smart Speaker Replacing Other Electronic Media?


Who here has a smart speaker? Odds are you or someone you know has made that plunge into this technology realm in recent years.

The rise of smart speakers continues. According to the latest edition of NPR and Edison Research's "Smart Audio Report", 43 million people in the United States now own a smart speaker. As is most often the case when new technology emerges, its rise comes at the expense of other devices. Just ask an iPod what it thinks about smartphones. In the case of smart speakers, the good old radio appears to be the most prominent victim. According to a spring 2018 survey among 900+ smart speaker owners, many of them report that they spend less time using their radio since having their voice-enabled speaker.

Since listening to music (in many cases online radio) is one of the most commonly used features of smart speakers, this doesn’t really come as a surprise. Maybe more surprising is the fact that smart speakers also seem to replace some smartphone usage for many users, indicating that they turn to their voice assistant instead of consulting their smartphone for simple tasks such as checking the weather, setting alarms or looking up basic information.

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