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Finding Their Voice: A Quarter of Online Adults Plan to Shop via Voice in 2019

Arlington, VA – October 3, 2018 – 
One in four U.S. online adults is likely to make a purchase using voice technology in the next year - and most will shop in their living rooms - according to a new Consumer Technology Association (CTA) study. CTA's 2018 Voice Shopping Report finds consumers who use digital assistants daily are much more likely to voice shop via a smart speaker - such as Amazon Echo and Google Home - or a digital assistant such as Apple's Siri.

"Digital assistants are enabling a fourth 'voice' sales channel to emerge, joining brick-and-mortar, online, and mobile as an avenue for buying goods and services," said Ben Arnold, senior director of trends and innovation, CTA. "Voice shopping is still a nascent practice, but as brands add more commerce-related skills and capabilities to digital assistants, we expect more consumers to experiment with voice shopping. This will play out broadly during the 2018 holiday season."

Smart Speaker Market
CTA's U.S. Consumer Technology Sales and Forecasts Report expects voice-controlled smart speaker sales to continue their meteoric rise, with 39.2 million units sold in the U.S. in 2018 (44 percent growth over 2017) after only three years on the market. Then, CTA expects sales to increase another 13 percent in 2019.

Additionally, CTA research says smart speakers have nearly tripled in ownership rate, reaching 22 percent of American households in 2018. That makes smart speakers one of the fastest-adopted technologies since tablets.

Location, Location, Location: The living room is the most common place consumers use their digital assistants (53 percent), followed by the bedroom (40 percent), kitchen (32 percent), in the vehicle (30 percent) and home office (20 percent).

What Voice Shoppers Want: Among actual purchases via voice, the top product categories are food and groceries, followed by household supplies and consumer electronics.

More than half of respondents say they would purchase a product or service they have seen or ordered in the past (56 percent), while the fewest number of shoppers are willing to order a product they have never seen online or in-store (nine percent).

"The kitchen is emerging as the next frontier for automation in the home," said Arnold. "As the third-most common room for smart speaker use, combined with food and groceries as a top category for voice purchases, it doesn't surprise me to see a growing number of voice-enabled small and major appliances. The kitchen is a chore-heavy room in the house, making it a perfect candidate for added efficiency and automation - a place where voice shopping will be especially useful."

CTA's 2018 Voice Shopping Report presents the findings of a quantitative survey to an online national sample of 2,000 U.S. adult respondents. The study was fielded between May 18 and 25, 2018. The study can be found at CTA.tech/research.

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