What constitutes a computer interface? It varies, of course, but for most of humanity the interface of the 21st century is a touchscreen display; a PC keyboard for the rest of us. The touchscreen display is predominant on smartphones and tablets, less so on PC notebooks, but total numbers do not necessarily a dominant computer interface make.
For Mac and PC we point and click to navigate; or, use the keyboard to navigate and enter information. For iPhone and iPad (and Android devices) we use the touchscreen to navigate and use the onscreen keyboard to enter information.
The whole interface is a series of processes. Eileen Brown and others think the future of computer interfaces is changing and the keyboard will be obsolete. When?
Thankfully, not any time soon. While a keyboard can be used to navigate a screen, touch and point and click dominate and based upon how humans tend to think and act, I don’t see the keyboard falling away to voice technology any time soon.
A new survey says that voice is the new media we should all adopt before its too late.
Rubbish. Amazon Echo, Google Home, Apple HomePod, Alexa, Assistant, and Siri notwithstanding.
The survey shows that almost two out of three (63%) of the population are already using their voice to interact with devices and appliances, and 53 % plan to use voice even more in a year’s time.
How many of those devices have keyboards? Amazon Echo, Google Home, and HomePod do not. Are such voice-controlled devices used to dictate messages?
I don’t want to fault the survey’s methodology, but where are such statistics dug up?
The usage of voice control has increased, with usage at home gaining the greatest traction. Almost seven out of 10 (63%) use voice control at home, work, or while out and about — only 14% will not use it at home.
Beyond the occasional Siri query and nod to Alexa to check on weather or traffic, who uses voice technology in a way similar to fingertips on a touch screen or point and click on a computer screen?
Nobody. OK, almost nobody. Including Robert Burns:
The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley.
In the five years, to 2023, the majority of respondents plan to use voice-activated devices and appliances to help them with cooking (63%), managing their home (58%), ordering groceries (52%), and organizing a holiday (52%).
After nearly a decade of Siri, I use Apple’s voice-controlled interface to dictate a Message to my wife, open an app whose location I cannot remember, and the occasional check with Siri to see if she is smart enough to use beyond knock-knock jokes and dictation (she’s not).
Using a touchscreen is a mostly private, intimate, and quiet affair. Voice controls are not.
When offered the chance to use their voice as a password, 44% would say yes, while 46 % would say no.
The No. 1 reason given for using voice was not having to remember a password; respondents are split between the ease of use of voice, and the security challenges it presents.
No mention is made of the noise that voice control brings to the equation. Can you image walking through a cubicle farm in some office building and listening to people communicate to their computers via voice?
Siri seems to have made a few basic inroads for action commands but little else. You’ll know that the talking user interface has become a thing when you see it used by more people. For now, the touchscreen, point and click, and the keyboard rule.
That will not change for many years.