The highly anticipated Xbox One was announced this week and with it arrived Microsoft's big push to commandeer your living room as the hub of all your home entertainment needs well beyond just video games. The keynote notably highlighted the console's ability to understand voice commands such as, "Xbox, Watch TV," "Watch HBO," "Xbox, Go Home", switching between options almost instantaneously. But the question that arises is, does anybody really want to be talking to their devices?
Maybe it's just me, but after watching the preview of voice commands with the Xbox One (above), I don't think interacting and controlling the console by voice is all that cool. Am I the only one that feels a bit timid about the idea of shouting "Xbox Watch HBO" or "Xbox, Play Halo" in a room occupied by people other than myself?
Voice commands in a communal setting seem distracting. They break up the continuity and conversation in the room. They make you...or again maybe it's just me...feel like a goob.
Apple introduced Siri almost two years ago. The voice activated assistant was touted as a breakthrough in voice recognition technology because it allowed conversational dialogue between yourself and your phone. I believe Siri works (albeit with a mixed reception as well) opposed to a media hub because it's a one-to-one dialogue — a short exchange while you're alone in the car, doing your morning jog, or getting ready for the day in your bedroom. Try using Siri in public and I think its met with that same public scrutiny that makes using voice commands unappealing.
How do you feel about the possibility of voice commands taking over in your home? Will we all just get used to voice commands in and outside of our homes, or do you plan to continue quietly using a remote control?