Month: June 2018

Flash briefing 11 – Connected cars, Lexus ES 2019 will have Alexa and Apple Play

Your car will talk way before it flies. We were promised flying cars instead we got talking, connected cars. And that might be a good thing. We are not ready for flying cars.

In the late 2017 Smart audio report by NPR and Edison Research, is said that 64% of Smart Speaker owners are interested in having Smart Speaker technology in their car.

Mercedes Benz recently announced voice control for models A-B-Class, CLA and GLA. The app is available in 10 languages and can be used from your phone connected to the car. Featuring weather reports, navigation and music playing, Mercedes built their own assistant, a decision that separate them from other manufacturers that have chosen Google or Amazon assistants.

Lexus also announced that the seventh generation of ES 2019 will come with Apple play and Amazon Alexa compatibility.

Tesla, which will have voice controlled commands in its Model 3, according to a tweet by Elon Musk it’s another one of the car companies announcing features with voice tech. Connected cars have arrived, we are not sure about all the implications it’ll have, but it’s clearly one application of voice it’s hard to argue against. After all where is more convenient to use voice that when you are driving or using your hands? Until we get self-driving and flying cars, voice tech is here to command it.

Thank you for listening and until next time. Find us @voicefirstlabs in Twitter, @voicefirstweekly in Instagram and our website is That’s

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Flash briefing 10 June 24 – What Voice Search Optimization Means For Your Industrial Marketing

We talked in one of last week flash briefings how businesses should pay attention to voice search. The trend in voice search uprising pose a new challenge for marketers and search engine optimization practitioners: Optimizing for voice search.

For industrial marketers the advent of voice search could change how their potential customers look for parts and services. Imagine a procurement manager who holds up his phone and shouts out a keyword like this (formatted the way a search engine would process it): “Ok google search for aluminum suppliers.” Or maybe it would be “Alexa show me CPVC pipe manufacturers.”

Some real keywords that illustrate how people in the manufacturing and industrial world are voice searching. In this example they are attempting to find solutions for sound and noise-related problems.

  • Ok Google show me a product for stopping noise
  • Ok Google give me install instructions on ibn f10 noise filter
  • Ok Google looking for legalities of noise in business
  • Ok Google i’m looking for soundproof panels
  • Alexa show me how to soundproof a room

Here are two about finding companies that provide craning and relevant equipment:

  • Ok Google crane companies
  • Ok Google crane companies new london county connecticut
  • Alexa show me an overhead crane

Some of the queries are structured exactly like standard typed searches, while others are more conversational. Manufacturing companies will need to account for both styles to fully succeed in optimizing their content for search engines. This means you have to pay closed attention to what users are searching now so you can optimize your content for it.

Sources referenced:

Flash briefing 9 – June 23 – What will be the role of your Alexa skills or Google Action in your decision making process?

You decided to enter voice tech and smart speakers market. You want to be ahead of the game and you took the leap to create Alexa skills and Google Actions, now what?

As a brand you should be considering your strategy for voice platforms and how consumers can reach you in those channels. Begin with defining a persona for your brand, how will it sound, what language will it use, will it be relaxed, formal, even good morning vs hello makes a difference. In what channels should you launch first, should it be smart speakers, if so, which first, Amazon Alexa, Google, others, voice actors or the platform’s voice, chatbots or all at once? And when you finally deploy your conversational solution in front of users, two more questions arise. One measuring how the users are interacting with your chatbot/skill/action, you should look into this as soon as possible to see how users are reacting to your conversational design, if they are getting frustrated and how can you improve the interaction. And the second, and most important, what role will this collected data of conversational interaction of users with your service will have in your decision making process. Part of the answer depends on the goals and key opportunities you have set and part you’ll need to discover it on the way, but you have to be willing to. This is the time for experimentation to figure out what is the best returns on voice technology for your company.

Thanks for listening!

Flash briefing 8 – Voice in a Can app: Alexa in Apple Watch

Did you know that Alexa can now run on the Apple watch?

Thanks to Voice in a can app, a standalone Apple Watch app, which means you don’t need to tether to an iPhone to use Alexa.

Apple has restricted the Apple Watch to easily access Siri and no other digital assistants, but Voice in a Can uses a watch complication to make it easy to launch the app from the watchface. As this is a third-party Alexa app, it also means you won’t be able to use it to make calls, play music, or do Echo announcements. However, it will fully support the smart home features of Alexa, you’ll be able to trigger your lights or other devices like an Alexa-enabled coffee machine while you’re out of the house. This is the best alternative out there for Alexa on your wrist since Amazon still does not support the Apple Watch. You can buy the app for $1.99 at the App Store.


Voice Interfaces in your credit cards and banks

Despite security and privacy concerns, there’s no doubt of the convenience of using voice for everyday money management.

Big banks and financial companies have started to offer banking through virtual assistants, Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Google’s Assistant, in a way that will allow customers to check their balances, pay bills and, in the near future, send money just with their voice. Regional banking giant U.S. Bank is the first bank to be on all three services, Alexa, Siri and Assistant.

Bank of America has Erica, a voice-activated virtual financial assistant, which just recently surpassed one million users according to a press release on BusinessWire.

Other financial companies have set up virtual assistant features. Credit card companies Capital One and American Express both have Alexa skills that allow customers to check their balances and pay bills. There are other smaller banks and credit unions that have set up Google Assistant or Alexa as well., a service to build conversational interfaces, reached an agreement with Fintech giant Finastra to integrate their platforms. This allows to extend their voice solution to Finastra’s 9,000+ financial institutions. It also means a lot more banks and credit unions will be able to offer omni-channel customer experiences without having to drop a single line of code.

The biggest challenge today for voice and finance is privacy. I think convenience will beat privacy and eventually users will get used to the risks or we’ll come up with some suitable solution. Until then, have you used any of these services? Let us know what you think @voicefirstweekly in Instagram.


Voice interfaces are making banking and finances less frustrating.

Alexa, can I trust you with my checkbook, right?

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