Recap: Voice Summit 2019

Voice technology has been on the horizon for decades, and it’s
really starting to come into its own. What was once a recording on
Sci-Fi television shows meant to forecast the future is in our
homes controlling our thermostats, doorbells, ovens, and more. With
one simple command we can call our parents or turn on the lights in
another room. While Alexa, the industry leader in voice technology,
started out with just ten skills, now there are more than 90,000
skills, and those skills will soon be woven together to create
super skills. All of this and more were the topics of discussion at
the Voice Summit 2019
last week in New York City, sponsored by Amazon Alexa.

“VOICE Summit 2019 was was an eye-opening experience that not
only showed how far voice-tech has come, but also its unlimited
potential,” said Mostafa Razzak. CEO, JMRConnect. “For businesses
that want to maintain — or obtain a competitive advantage through
technology, VOICE Summit exhibitors, speakers and sponsors showed
myriad use-cases for every industry. From retail, banking and
healthcare to small business, hospitality and automotive, voice
technology is the future of how we communicate with machines, data
and each other.”

David Isbitski, Chief Technical Evangelist for
Amazon’s Alexa and Echo
, gave the Keynote address. Isbitski
teaches courses on voice design, natural language, and how they
apply to mobile apps and the cloud. Perhaps the most interesting
thing Isbitski had to say about voice technology was that Voice is
special because it’s something that, as part of the sandwich
generation, he can use to talk both to his parents and to his kids
and everyone is comfortable with it. It’s an exciting area of
technology mainly because we, as humans, respond so much better to
something that we can relate to on a more primal level as opposed
to a computer-synthesized voice or other computer input that can
range from frustrating to scary.

It’s also interesting to note that those 90,000 Alexa skills,
each of which had to be painstakingly designed and built, have now
become somewhat of a toolbox to create the next generation of
skills. These skills can be stacked to create entirely new skills.
For example, your voice device could start to detect when you sound
sick and tell your loved ones to call you to check on you. It’s
not even that far into the future that we will see this type of
thing — these are the next generation of skills that are being
developed now.

Susan Westwater, CEO of Pragmatic Digital and Scot
Westwater, Co-Founder of Pragmatic Digital spoke to a packed house
about strategies and purposes for voice apps. Voice technology is
being adopted at a rapid rate, but many companies don’t know
where it should fit into their strategy. This seminar was an
exercise in determining best use cases for this emerging
technology, of which there are many for almost any industry.

Grit Daily’s own co-Founder Jordan French took
part in a panel about developing communications strategies along
with Amy Summers, President of Pitch Publicity, Nara
Kasbergen, Senior Software Engineer for NPR, and Matt Quinn, VP of Software
Development for Audible.
French also hosted the Voice Speakers’ Dinner, which included Tom
Wisniewski of Newark Venture
Partners
, Emil Protalinski, VentureBeat Managing Editor, Bonnie
Halper, Founding Editor at AlleyWatch, Susan Westwater of
Women in Voice,
and me, where we talked about living side-by-side with the
technology of tomorrow in a relationships-first setting.

One of the most unexpected things I learned about during the
Voice Summit was how podcasting and Voice intersect, namely in the
underused and undervalued world of flash briefings. Terri Fisher, MD of
Voice First Health pointed out that for every 65 podcasts there is
one flash briefing, which leaves a tremendous opportunity to
leverage this space to make your podcast more visible. These are
searchable on Amazon and it only takes a few short steps to
create:

  • Decide on a topic
  • Give it a title with a short description, a long description,
    and keywords 
  • Flash briefing takes about 24 hours to approve
  • You’ve just created a voice marketing funnel!

There was a lot of food for thought at the Voice Summit 2019 and
I’m looking forward to learning even more next year. The
possibilities for this space are truly inspiring.

 

The post Recap: Voice
Summit 2019
appeared first on Grit Daily.

Author: Anchorman

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