alexa Speech-driven environmental control systems--a qualitative analysis of users' perceptions


Journal of Aging Science

Author(s): Judge S, Robertson Z, Hawley M, Enderby P

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PURPOSE: To explore users' experiences and perceptions of speech-driven environmental control systems (SPECS) as part of a larger project aiming to develop a new SPECS. The motivation for this part of the project was to add to the evidence base for the use of SPECS and to determine the key design specifications for a new speech-driven system from a user's perspective. METHOD: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 12 users of SPECS from around the United Kingdom. These interviews were transcribed and analysed using a qualitative method based on framework analysis. RESULTS: Reliability is the main influence on the use of SPECS. All the participants gave examples of occasions when their speech-driven system was unreliable; in some instances, this unreliability was reported as not being a problem (e.g., for changing television channels); however, it was perceived as a problem for more safety critical functions (e.g., opening a door). Reliability was cited by participants as the reason for using a switch-operated system as back up. Benefits of speech-driven systems focused on speech operation enabling access when other methods were not possible; quicker operation and better aesthetic considerations. Overall, there was a perception of increased independence from the use of speech-driven environmental control. CONCLUSIONS: In general, speech was considered a useful method of operating environmental controls by the participants interviewed; however, their perceptions regarding reliability often influenced their decision to have backup or alternative systems for certain functions.

This article was published in Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol. and referenced in Journal of Aging Science

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