More and More US Smart Speaker Owners Are Controlling TV With Voice

75 million people in the US are now using a smart speaker, and more than half of the – 39 million – are using it to control their smart TV, video streamer or other TV devices at least weekly. This finding comes from Strategy Analytics’ latest report, 2019 Smart Speaker User Survey – US Results, and is based on a survey of 1136 users of smart speakers carried out in July and August 2019. 

With the general availability of remote controls with voice recognition from all the major content platforms (Apple, Amazon, Roku, etc) and Smart TV manufacturers, users quickly realize what is possible and more convenient to do with voice. This means that 1 in 8 of all TV users is now using their voice to find shows, movies or videos, change channels, change the volume or simply turn the TV on or off. The research has important implications for media providers since video content is increasingly discovered and played through voice control rather than traditional approaches such as touchscreens, keyboards and remote controls.

Surprisingly, the Strategy Analytics survey found that the most common use case for voice-controlling the TV is turning it on or off, followed by changing the volume and searching for a show and playing it on the TV. Changing channels is also more likely to be done on a daily basis.

David Watkins, Director, Smart Speakers and Screens at Strategy Analytics commented: “People have predicted the death of the TV remote control for many years. It seems that viewers have finally found a practical alternative – their own voices. Smart speakers are making video services and the TV itself even easier to use and content easier to find.”

David Mercer, VP, Principal Analyst and the report’s author added: “With the growth in online video services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, how people find video content is changing fast. The increasing popularity of smart speakers as TV control devices represents another phase in TV’s transformation and content owners need to plan for the inevitable disruption caused by these emerging user experiences.”

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