"Miss understandable": A study on how users appropriate voice assistants and deal with misunderstandings
This study examines the appropriation and usage of voice assistants like Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa in private households. Our research is based on 10 in-depth interviews with users of voice assistants and a follow-up evaluation of their interaction histories. Our results illustrate situations in which the voice assistants were used at home, what strategies the users adopted to interact with them, how the interactions were performed, and what difficulties users experienced. A focus of our study is on misunderstandings, situations where interactions failed partially or completely. Our study shows that the full potential of voice assistants is often not utilized, as complex interactions are often subject to failures and users revert to simple use cases. Our participants used their voice assistant mostly for simple commands, often not even trying new functions. An analysis of their appropriation strategies resulted in implications for the design of supportive tools a s well as the further development and optimization of voice interfaces.