Conversational interfaces integrated in all sorts of devices are changing the way we interact with technology and are in the roadmaps of a lot of different companies. Amazon and Google are investing a lot of resources to bring their smart assistants to everyday objects, and so are manufacturers of a lot of different products. A number of smart assistants already reside in most of our smartphones and there are dedicated devices in the market since 2017, but who can resist the idea of a speaking toilet? Here are a few examples of conversational interfaces in everyday objects.
Voice interfaces are hot
One of the first voice-enabled devices I ever heard of was the microwave. Thinking about it, making fast meals from the couch must sound like a dream for a lot of consumers, and voice can be helpful for the youngest users or users who have permanent or temporary accessibility issues.
A talking keyboard
Roland has released a keyboard that users can adjust by talking with Alexa. Used together with a tablet that has the Roland piano app installed, users can learn and improve. This is a great example of how voice interfaces contribute to a better user experience when users have their hands busy.
Ask Bixby to wash
Samsung has an immense potential to get to homes thanks to their TV and washer lines, and Bixby users can already program or handle their washers do home chores using voice wherever they are.
Keeper of secrets
For 7000$ you can have a toilet you can talk to. Powered by Alexa, this toilet looks like a space craft. Remember Alexa can whisper if you whisper to it, so you can have your conversations in private. Ask it to change the lights or play music for a new experience. I can’t imagine this becoming mainstream and I see a lot of issues with privacy concerns that will make a lot of users frown, but expect to see these toilets in fancy restaurants or hotels and in your instagram timeline.
An absorbent conversation
Vacuum cleaners have never been so hype. Roomba has changed the way we see this device and today conversations make them even more a part of the family. This is another great example of conversational interfaces improving our empathy with the home robots to come, and goes a step further from the Bixby powered washers.
With a grain of salt
Smalt has created a fancy salt shaker you can talk to. Although the proposal is quite dumb, it is a sneak peak into a future where any device will have the ability to talk back to you – and to listen to what you do and say to collect data. I think this use case is more interesting as a concept than as a real product. But take this with a grain of salt.
Did you enjoy this post about conversational interfaces integrated in everyday objects? Continue reading about conversational interfaces in history or about the movies that have changed the way we see them.