Thursday, August 08, 2013

Voice is the new Touch

We saw it happen many times before, Windows is the new DOS, Web is the new Desktop, Touch is the new Web and now we can start to glimpse the next one: Voice is the new Touch.

All of these technologies still exist, each of those phrases doesn't state the end of the previous one, but the addition of a new layer that impacts everything we'll do and see in the future. Some people tried to kill the web a while ago ... and they were very unsuccessful at that ... so we shouldn't try that again. Touch will live a long life. We're just saying Voice came here to stay on top of Touch.

What will be driving this new paradigm shift?

It clearly started with Siri, although it didn't have the strength to do the whole click, it started something big.

For me personally, Google Glass caused the major shift.

Others will see it with the Moto.

Less early adopters will see it when cool voice applications start to come out on an android or iPhone near them.
And the curve of adoption that I mentioned a few times before, will follow it's typical shape.

My aha moment was a week ago, as I was sitting on a meeting table and someone wanted to know how many simulators we had from a particular brand store in a certain area. After being using GoogleGlass for three months, it came as second nature to me to think wouldn't it be nice to be able to say: "ok glass, what is the number of simulators sold in Canada during the last quarter?".

And that was a realization, not only it would be cool to be able to ask my custom database that question, it will be a standard thing to do one day. The layer of voice will become pervasive. Once the users start using voice for a few simple things, it will be unstoppable. Users will want more voice commands and queries. Developers will want to enable voice on their apps. Voice will be the new Touch.

Wow! I was shocked! and inspired!!

Couple days later I was having meetings to discuss Glass integration for vertical markets. My first one was with EverMed, talking about bringing Glass to Medicine. Helping the doctor do her rounds and prescriptions with Glass. Any other day before my aha moment I would have been thinking exactly that 'How to bring Glass to Medicine?". But after that moment in which I realized Voice is the new Touch my vision was expanded. I mentioned to Christian Saad and Thomas Schartz that we at 33 Labs have a voice/touch workflow engine called "Oktopus, get up to speed".

They just loved the idea. That is exactly what a doctor needs! said Dr. Saad.

Everything was starting to click.

So, what if in our next meeting, bringing Glass to Agricultural production we could port the same concept. How about using Oktopus as the voice/touch workflow engine, integrating android tablets or cells and Glass into a workflow for Agricultural Producers and Agricultural Engineers?

Gabriel Medina, specialist developing software for this vertical for the last 30 years loved the idea. Eduardo Blasina, Agricultural Engineer loved the idea as well.

They all got it and they even started writing scenarios on word documents for collaboration. It was a natural fit!

What I see in the future, is this huge paradigm shift (one more time) that will make every little app have to have a voice component.

We see databases enabling a natural language query of some sorts.

Business Intelligence cubes being accessed by voice.

Imagine the possibilities for people with sight issues, some of which are already happening, as well as people with mobility issues as it's already happening as well.

It really impacts every piece of software as we know it today.

I'm not talking about the future on 10 or 20 years, I'm saying this is a revolution that is about to happen as the moto goes out in the streets and gets in the hands of users, followed by Glass coming out to the consumer beginning of next year. This will happen fast, in accelerated mode as we're getting used to by now.

As for 33 Labs as a company, we'll keep getting ready for this vision to be fulfilled.
We believe Oktopus our voice/touch workflow engine will be a key component of this shift.

Mark my words: Voice is the new Touch.



Unknown said...

Nice one! I totally agree with you. I think Google Voice API should be added to everything. ( especially Glass ) We are developing a Google Glass and Augmented Reality Golf application @ #iCaddy_ @iCaddy_

Kate Peters said...

As a voice professional, I am very happy to hear this and it's what I have been feeling for years. I am intrigued with your work. Thanks!