Digital voice assistants are displacing mobile devices as the fastest growing tech trend inside Australian homes, the latest research from Accenture shows.
The Aussie age of digital virtual assistance has arrived, according to the Accenture report released on Friday. It suggests the relatively cheap devices (DVAs) are becoming the new in-home tech-hub that's outstripping smartphones as the tech-of-choice for entertainment, shopping and information services.
DVAs are voice activated digital devices performing simple services - from playing music to turning on the light (or the oven).
Accenture surveyed 21,000 consumers in 19 countries, and while India, the US and Brasil have the most consumers preferring DVAs instead of smartphones, the artificial intelligence-driven devices are beginning to displace mobile use here as well.
According to the study, seven out of 10 DVA-wielding Australians said they use their smartphones less and for fewer tasks in the home.
Three quarters of Australians said they now use their smartphones less for entertainment, 71 per cent are using them less for buying stuff and 55 per cent said they prefer DVAs for general information searches.
Accenture's global managing director of high-tech business David Sovie, said nine out of 10 consumers rated their use of the tech as highly satisfying and DVAs now present a genuine challenge to the dominance of smartphones in the domestic digital space.
"These low-cost devices deliver valuable and practical benefits and are relatively easy to use, and their rapidly growing popularity is one of the most striking trends in the high-tech industry," Mr Sovie said.
While not yet as widespread as devices with embedded digital assistants, stand-alone DVAs are used more often.
By the end of 2018, it's expected that 23 per cent of Australians will own a DVA, up from four per cent in 2017.
Accenture expects DVA ownership will grow by 50 per cent year-on-year across the countries surveyed and that one in three online consumers in China, India, the US, Brazil and Mexico will own one by the end of 2018.