Uniphore, the leader in Conversational Service Automation (CSA), today released survey results revealing Singaporean consumers’ perspectives on the challenges and opportunities for video conversations.
Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the world has seen increased adoption of video calls in nearly every area of life. The survey identified a disconnect between the benefits of video conversations and the unintended challenges it creates. The results also indicated a strong willingness amongst Singaporean consumers to adopt artificial intelligence (AI) to drive improvements in their experiences.
When considering the rise of video calls throughout the past 18+ months, local consumers revealed a mix of both frustration and appreciation for what video conversations have to offer.
Benefits of Video Calls Include More Effective and Meaningful Connections
Respondents noted some clear benefits of having conversations on video including better engagement rates. When using video, a majority (72%) of respondents indicated they felt the participants ranged from somewhat, very or extremely engaged with them. Further, 69% of participants said video calls provide them with a more meaningful connection with others. This is especially important for conversations that require empathy or trust.
The Dark Side of Video Calls: Multitasking and Distractions Are Everywhere
More than two-thirds (67%) of Singaporean consumers reported they spent significantly more time on video last year than in prior years. Participants admitted to doing a wide range of nonprofessional multitasking, personal tasks and other projects during video calls, including web surfing, online shopping and social media scanning.
Surprisingly, they also reported the following activities during video calls:
- Watching YouTube + Streaming (50%)
- Read social media/online news (43%)
- Bathroom visits (37%)
- Ordered a meal (28%)
- Faking bad internet connection to leave early (19%)
When asked about factors they dislike about conducting a video call, respondents cited video calls to be more exhausting than audio calls (34%). Being ‘camera-ready’ was also identified as a key issue: 33% of respondents don’t like seeing themselves on camera and 32% cited boredom, leading them to multi-task during calls. Lastly, respondents noted distractions were a challenge with video calls – two fifths (40%) of respondents claimed it’s very difficult to tell if others on the call were engaged. Respondents also noted that they felt it was hard to feel energized and motivated (38%) and 30% felt they couldn’t get their points across during meetings.
“Since the start of the pandemic we’ve witnessed the widespread adoption of video conversations across personal and professional engagements. As the survey results revealed, there is still work to do to make virtual interactions as seamless and effective as in-person conversations,” said Umesh Sachdev, CEO and co-founder of Uniphore. “There is a clear need for additional tools and capabilities to enhance higher degrees of people-to-people understanding. Through AI and automation technology, companies and business leaders can create better experiences for customers, pick up on nonverbal cues that they may have missed, and provide insights using data that is decipherable and actionable.”
Consumers Are Ready to Embrace AI to Improve Meeting Experience
While video is being used today for many purposes, it’s clear that technology can make these video conversations more effective and enjoyable. Of note, according to the survey results, an overwhelming majority (77%) of Singaporean respondents said they would be open to using automation or AI tools to improve video conversations. Respondents noted they would like AI to provide engagement tips based on emotions (43%), help them build deeper connections with others on calls (42%) and take action on items being discussed (34%).
Earlier this year, Uniphore acquired two companies — Emotion Research Labs and Jacada to further leverage video and emotion AI capabilities along with low code automation tools to improve customer experiences. Through the use of AI and machine learning, companies can enhance communication by adding the ability to better understand engagement levels and emotions of participants, and ultimately drive better business results. Uniphore is the only vendor capable of providing a complete platform including low code/no code capabilities along with best-of-breed voice and video AI and automation capabilities.
For more details on the Singapore survey and results from other geographies, visit this page.
A survey of 1,000 U.S. and 2100 consumers across Australia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, UAE and Vietnam was completed in June 2021 by Researchscape International, a market research consultancy, and through an online survey platform – Zoho. The survey was administered online and included representation across all age groups between 18 to 65+.