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Nov 13, 2020
7 MIN READ

Top 25 Voice Technology Companies to Help Businesses Scale

Voice AI technology has allowed humans to talk to devices and apps and get accurate answers back, faster than ever before. For many people, voice assistants have become teachers, companions, counselors, and personal assistants all rolled into one entity..

You can search the web, get internal sales information, access healthcare data, tap into community events, play a game, buy groceries or gifts, gain insight into customer sentiment, get customer service, or solve operations and supply chain issues, all through natural voice queries. Voice technology for businesses is here and growing. 

According to a report by OC&C Strategy Consultants, voice-based shopping is expected to jump to $40 billion in 2022. Already, 40% of people in the U.S. are using voice assistants regularly and this number is growing every year. 

Besides making our lives more convenient, voice technology has a way of leveling the playing field for technology access for older adults, people with visual or tactile limitations, and children. It gives us the freedom to control our environment while performing other tasks and provides greater health and safety protections in the midst of a pandemic. Voice technology is entering an era where it can help people better access the world around them, and become more productive, efficient, healthier, and hands-free.

Recently, I spoke to leaders from 25 voice technology companies that are providing businesses and individuals with solutions that are already helping them scale. 

The Top 25 Voice Technology Companies “Today”

The list of “Top 25” is not compiled in any order and should not imply that any of the 25 companies listed are better than the others. In addition, I recognize that there are other notable voice technology companies that share niche markets with those in this list, which is why there are no numbers next to the company profiles and I’ve named them the top 25 “Today.”

Businesses included in the list must meet the following 3 criteria:

  1. Fit the niche listed
  2. Share the same values here at Top 25 Today (care, inclusivity, efficiency)
  3. Should be either an entrepreneur, startup, or small to midsize business.  

The following is a sampling of a few of those conversations.

SoundHound Inc.

Houndify is SoundHound Inc.’s independent voice AI platform. Powered by proprietary Speech-to-Meaning® and Deep Meaning Understanding™ technologies, Houndify is helping brands build custom voice experiences that respond with unprecedented speed and accuracy.

“In the last five years we’ve focused on partnering with large organizations who have a voice roadmap to give them a custom, branded voice experience. We recommend a branded voice experience so that when people interact with your products, they’re not interacting with Alexa to get to your product, instead they can interact directly with your product through voice.”

Mike Zagorsek, VP Product Marketing, SoundHound Inc.

Alkira

Award-winning voice tech company Alkira Software – the brains behind the pioneering Conversational AI platform TalkVia – offers strategy, design and development services across multiple industries with an existing portfolio of high profile clients.

Paige Harkness, Head of Partnerships and Integration, Alkira shared a success story with Alkira and the State Library of Queensland for Anzac Day.

“They wanted an accessible way for people to place a poppy at the war memorial, even though they couldn’t get out of the house (due to severe lockdown rules). They included some amazing historical stories from the archives and the option to play the beautiful call that’s traditionally played on Anzac Day, “The Last Post.” It resulted in thousands of people being able to commemorate differently, but still in a really meaningful way with a poppy placed at the end of it.”

Paige Harkness, Head of Partnerships and Integration, Alkira

Voicify

Approachable and easy to use for non-technical teams while being flexible and extensible for enterprise solutions.

“When it comes to a new technical channel like voice, regardless of size, a lot of businesses are starting from the same point. It’s almost like the days when businesses were building websites back in the 90’s. How do I get started? What are the tools I can use? How can I do this more effectively. We’ve found the same things happening within voice. But as they become more familiar with the channel, they start to build out more immersive experiences and they realize they can use voice as a storytelling tool.”

Nick Laidlaw, Co-Founder and CTO, Voicify

Conversight.ai

Most Innovative Application of Voice Technology In Business Intelligence. ConverSight.ai’s assistant, ATHENA, allows businesses of all shapes and sizes to converse with mass amounts of data to gain valuable insights and accelerate growth.

“There are two major differences between Alexa and ATHENA. Number one is that ATHENA understands the supply chain space very well. ATHENA knows the critical metrics that are important for you to measure, and that’s where the subject matter expertise comes in. It’s not a piece of software that you download and have ordinary people do all the reporting. You are hiring an employee who is conversing with you. That is the critical difference.”

Ganesh Gandhieswaran, CEO & Co-Founder, Conversight.ai

Speak2

Providing ways for people to connect and assist their aging loved ones in a realistic and affordable way.

“We work with senior living and homecare businesses. Our software creates a way for the senior to engage with whomever is in their circle of trust, whoever their caregivers are. When someone is aging, the more technology grows around them, the more isolated they become. We started to see that we could overcome some of the barriers for patients and particularly with aging patients by helping them better engage with people using a smart speaker.”

Matt Smith, CEO, Speak2

RAIN

Amongst the best at integrating wildly different disciplines – strategy, creative, design, technology – in order to set and deliver on big ambitions in voice. 

“Voice can really delight customers, but also can transform the operations of a business and that’s something we’re really excited about. Not just on the consumer side, but on the employee facing or enterprise side. We’re on a mission to make technology invisible through voice and to get in better harmony with technology through voice as a healthier medium.”

Eric Turkington, VP of Strategic Partnerships, RAIN

HandsFree Health

HandsFree Health uniquely offers a secure, integrated voice technology platform that helps individuals move closer to compliance and optimal health through its suite of products for consumers and businesses.

“Voice technology brings a level of comfort to the user and to their loved ones and in the end that’s the most important piece of the puzzle. At the end of the day, you’re always focused on the end user. You may sell it through a business or an employer, but they’re not going to buy it if their employees or their members aren’t happy with it or aren’t getting their needs filled from it.”

Dan Messina, Co-founder, Handsfree Health

Data Driven Design

Data Driven Design specializes on an opinion-free process, instead using data to design and execute digital marketing strategies, web design and development and voice applications. Strategically saving on the overhead cost of a large, fancy office with beer on tap, Data Driven Design has strategically chosen to be a fully distributed remote work team.

“Data is always going to win over opinions and it’s not necessarily going to be used to prove a point or make things take longer than they should due to analysis. We use data to say, ‘this is more powerful than your opinion on what the design should be. You don’t have to take forever to make a decision, look at the data and move to the next thing.’ That makes projects take less time and cost a lot less money.”

Paul Hickey, CEO and Founder, Data Driven Design

True Reply

The fastest and easiest way to launch and manage voice apps on Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and beyond.

“Our vision was to break away from the silos of engineering and development and allow anyone regardless of their technological expertise to launch a voice experience. We make it super easy for businesses to use Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant to create deep and meaningful relationships with their customers. Today, with the pandemic and social distancing and  lockdowns and the craziness, the opportunity for using these voice assistants to build and engage with consumers is actually pretty incredible.”

Jose Cotto, CEO and Co-founder, True Reply

ReadSpeaker AI

ReadSpeaker AI provides bespoke voice solutions that put the power of voice into the hands of marketers and innovators.

“One thing that text-to-speech does, in general, is to make efficiency and accessibility into user experiences. As the business world continues to digitally transform and strive to create more personal interactions…what falls by the wayside in this move is that consumers miss out on that human interaction. Brands and businesses have moved to voice as a solution to bring back that human element.”

Nate Murray, Marketing Director of N. America, ReadSpeaker AI

Sixième Son

With over 400 sonic brands under their belts, Sixième Son brings reassuring expertise in creating measurable brand differentiation, attention and long-term strength.

“Just the way that a brand has colors, typeface, logos, and patterns, they also could have an auditory brand that has the same consistency, the same rules, and the same idea of tying the brand together at every single touchpoint—having a consistent thread that runs through auditorily just the way you do visually these days,”

Colleen Fahey, US Managing Director, Sixième Son

FIRST

A team of specialists, focused on helping businesses to grow by enhancing the online customer experience and by gaining deep customer insight.

“What does voice do differently in association with and extend upon websites, chatbots, and other channels? Not just regurgitate the same information or give you the same thing you can get through other channels, but actually allow it to do something that means that a user who interacts with you that way is gaining some form of additional value rather than just being able to get it through the website. Just using markup schema to read out content on the website is not actually developing a voice environment. That’s just taking something and making it audible, but it’s not making it assistive.”

Matt Ware, Head of Operations, FIRST

Other brands that made the Top 25 Today list include:

  • Just AI
  • OR Intelligence
  • Bond AI
  • Spaient X
  • Hyro
  • Spin Dance
  • Voiq
  • Alan AI
  • Encounter AI
  • Voxx Up
  • Behavioral Signals
  • Novel Effect
  • Vocala

Top 25 Today believes that all companies excel at something, that there is enough room for everyone, and that each company should stand out for what makes them great to attract the right clientele. Businesses can apply or can be asked to be a part of the list, but must be approved by Top 25 Today before purchasing a complete spot. Businesses chosen can also pay to be shown within the first five spots to be seen on the first page for better visibility when a viewer opens the page, otherwise, the list is at random. Learn more at top25today.com.

Keri Roberts

Keri Roberts is the Owner, Branding Connection and Founder, Top 25 Today. For over 10 years she’s built communities as a leader in the podcasting and voice technology space and helped various companies increase their brand awareness through content marketing.

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