“My car doesn’t understand me!” This sentiment comes up over and over again. Interaction with traditional in-vehicle voice has been the biggest complaint among new vehicle buyers year after year and results are no different in the J.D. Power 2020 Initial Quality Study. In order to understand how customers prefer to engage with voice services in the vehicle, Alexa Auto worked with J.D. Power to conduct the 2019 J.D. Power/Alexa Automotive In-Vehicle Voice Connectivity Study.
The Same Voice Assistant at Home and in the Vehicle
Voice services are becoming an increasingly natural part of daily life for people, and their expectations do not change when they step into their vehicle. They want to have the same great experience they have at home when they are on the go. Over two-thirds of consumers said they want the same voice assistant they have at home in their next vehicle. Specifically, consumers cited three primary reasons for this desire: 1) Consumers feel that they would already know how to use the feature, which can be extremely helpful as vehicle technology continues to become more sophisticated and complex than ever; 2) They want a consistent experience from home to car; and 3) They desire the personalization that a voice assistant can provide when the customer has previously taught their preferences to the assistant.
Satisfaction with Voice Assistants
How satisfied are consumers with the voice experience in the vehicle? Consumers rated the traditional in-vehicle voice recognition the least satisfying voice experience today with a score of less than six on a ten-point scale. Cloud-based voice assistants (in all forms) outperform the traditional experience. Unsurprisingly, voice experiences that are built in to the vehicle and offer the least amount of setup friction (e.g., not having to plug in a device or connect via Bluetooth) proved the most satisfying to customers.
Whereas most in-vehicle voice services are limited to specific vehicle functions, cloud-based voice assistants also provide access to experiences that go beyond manufacturer-specific features including entertainment, communications, navigation, control of smart home devices, and services like finding and paying for gas or parking. These features are an extension of the experience used by customers every day at home and add to the satisfaction they have with cloud-based voice assistants over traditional in-vehicle voice recognition software.
The bottom line: Customers prefer cloud-based built-in voice services like Alexa in their vehicles, which provide a wider range of experiences than most traditional in-vehicle voice recognition services. We encourage automakers to seek out hardware and software systems that can accommodate advanced, cloud-based voice assistants, and to support services that provide customers with more choice, flexibility, and control over their in-vehicle experience.
Want to learn more about how to get Alexa in your vehicle and what she can do for you? Click here.