Towards Omnipresent and Smart Speech Assistants
The functionality of digital voice assistant systems is constantly growing. The attractiveness of such devices is based on their ease of use as they allow to conduct online searches and orders as well as smart home services by simply calling up the device. However, the implications of voice-based interaction are not always clear to the user, especially since today's voice assistants are sometimes only better remote controls. In future, however, they should not only process simple commands, but also enable a natural and smooth interaction and be omnipresent. In addition to an improved speech recognition, this will require enhanced speech understanding and more intelligent dialog guidance. While state-of-the art systems are mainly conceptualized for young adults and middle-aged people, future systems should adapt to the user in order to meet the needs of different (vulnerable) user groups ranging from young children to the elderly. This will be accompanied by efforts to make systems more understandable and users more sophisticated. Consequently, legal aspects resulting from the spread of voice assistants and the stricter data protection regulations are important. The goal of this Research Topic is to present the latest advances - both from academia and industry - in the area of voice assistants. We aim at bringing together researchers from the disciplines of human-computer interaction, artificial intelligence, and human factors in order to promote interdisciplinary collaborations and cross-fertilization of ideas. More specifically, we are interested in exploring the current landscape and future directions for the emerging topic of voice assistants.
Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg
Technische Universität Berlin
Jessica Martina Szczuka
University of Duisburg
St. Petersburg Institute for Informatics and Automation of the Russian Academy of Sciences