Smart speakers are a natural privacy concern. There's a speaker that's always listening for you to say a magic word so that it can activate and do your bidding. It can be a little scary.
In a new bit of consumer research, MusicWatch (via Digital Trends) found that 48% of US consumers 13 and over were concerned about privacy issues when it came to their smart speakers. They were especially concerned when it came to using on-demand music streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music on their speakers.
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Why? Well, it's not quite clear. However, music tends to be a very personal experience. Your music reflects your tastes, your moods and your feelings. People turn to music in dark times and happy times. Also, there are a lot of guilty pleasures you probably don't want your friends to know about, like Coldplay.
Despite the concerns, 55% of surveyed users are using their smart speakers to listen to music. Still, concern about listening to music on a smart speaker has the potential to hamper the growth of streaming services. The likes of Spotify and Apple want you to be able to listen to its music anywhere at any time, and the smart home market is a big part of that. Plus, there are companies like Sonos which are pegging their futures on smart speakers.
However, there is some hope. Users also see the benefits of streaming services on smart speakers, like how they can create shared music experiences and bring families together to listen to music better than before. People are also turning to radio on smart speakers, with two thirds of users opting to listen to stuff like Absolute Radio or NPR.
With our smart speakers able to do so much, like give us the weather, set timers and connect with our smart homes, it's easy to sometimes forget that they are speakers after all, and that music is one of the things that people turn to them for - despite concerns.