Developing the Proactive Speaker Prototype Based on Google Home

Published in Extended Abstracts of the 2021 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, 2021


Smart speakers and conversational interfaces increasingly make it into consumer’s homes. Listening to users’ commands assigns them a rather passive role. Proactive speakers, on the other hand, have the potential to empower a broad range of applications such as context-aware health interventions and self-tracking systems. To achieve proactivity, however, requires the speaker to become context-aware and be able to detect opportune moments to initiate interactions. In this work, we present a proactive speaker prototype based on Google Home to investigate interaction contexts. We, additionally, built a voice-based Experience Sampling Method (ESM) application to study contextual factors that are correlated to opportune moments for device-triggered interactions. Preliminary results from a three-week field study with 7 participants indicate the proposed prototype is a robust way to achieve proactivity and implement voice-based ESM. We present use cases for future research and applications for proactive smart speakers in the context of digital health.