By Jay Malin, Managing Director
An informal survey of colleagues on a conference call, along with my own experience, led me to the conclusion that home speakers such as Amazon Alexa and Google Home were being used by older adults and seniors. I observed that during the holidays, many of my contemporaries had purchased inexpensive home speakers for their parents and installed and connected them as a novelty.
Just recently, I read a report that identified the largest demographic of home speaker users were age 55+. This is interesting because of the importance of conversation and “connectedness” for seniors. I ran across a study several years ago that demonstrated this by simply illuminating a lamp in a senior’s home when family wasn’t near but was active. In addition, a wireless speaker is able to assist people with visual impairments. Aside from simple commands such as “Call my daughter” or “Turn on the lights,” home speakers can be configured to answer “How much do I owe?” “When should I take my medication?” or “When will the power be restored?” These are simple questions that can be answered by intelligent home speaker services in order to extend the reach of customer service. This inclusiveness also demands that the speaker answers a wide variety of questions and is not a point solution for show.