Study: People Use Phone Virtual Assistants Less Than In 2016

July 17, 2017 - Written By Mark Real

A new study conducted by Verto Analytics showed some very interesting trends regarding the use personal assistants. The study covered both phone-based assistants like Siri and S Voice and home-focused ones, which include Alexa and Google Assistant. The data for this study was obtained from monitoring a pre-selected group of panelists and surveying consumers that use personal assistants from May 2016 to May 2017.  Before detailing the numbers provided by the study, it is important to point out that the research firm was not able to include the figures from the use of assistants on home devices and personal computers. Hence, the actual usage numbers for personal assistants that cater to both the desktop and homes like Cortana, Alexa, and even Google Home may be under-reported.

Based on Verto Analytics’ study, it seems that the phone-based personal assistants see big declines in terms of average monthly users while those that cater to home computing devices grew. As of May 2017, Siri managed to hold on to its position as the most widely used personal assistant. Siri is used by around 41.4 million consumers, nearly twice as much as the second place holder Samsung’s S Voice. However, both phone-based assistants saw declines in the number of monthly users, with Siri dropping by as much as 15-percent compared to the same period last year. Meanwhile, the monthly unique user figures for Google and Alexa grew substantially, with the latter increasing its user figures by more than 200-percent within the same time frame.

Both Siri and S Voice also saw reduced engagement within the same time frame. The engagement with personal assistants is measured through the “stickiness” figure, which compares the number of daily users to the monthly unique users. Based on this figure, the engagement for Siri was reduced by half while for S Voice, it went down by more than 20-percent. Immediately after people engage with personal assistants, consumers often utilize Google applications like Chrome, Maps, and Google Play Store. This trend tends to show that people use assistants, for searching apps or looking for directions. The study also shows that older consumers tend to use personal assistant more often than younger ones. Women, meanwhile, use assistants a bit more than men, with the former comprising 54-percent of the user base. Despite several weaknesses of the study, it provides consumers and interested folks a glimpse of the changes in the increasingly competitive field of personal assistants.