Amazon Pay VP says voice tech represents a “new era in commerce”

Vice president of Amazon Pay Patrick Gauthier has hailed the potential of voice payments as a “new era in commerce”.

Speaking to CNBC yesterday, Gauthier said that voice payment technology has the potential to transform the industry just like “ecommerce 20 years ago”.

The rise of smart speakers, including Amazon’s own Echo range, is predicted to drive an explosion in voice-based shopping, set to be worth more than $40 billion by 2022.

According to Gauthier around 40 per cent of consumers believe their smart speaker will be used somewhere in their shopping journey in the next three years.

READ MORE: Amazon introduces major new privacy features for Alexa amid growing criticism

In light of this, he added that retailers should “embrace it in anticipation of the next level of consumer expectation.”

“The potential is phenomenal,” he added.

“Just like mobile 10 years ago, there is a lot we need to learn. There is lot we need to understand about what are the right use cases because trying to do with a smart assistant what already works well in a mobile would be really a waste of everybody’s time.”

Gauthier said Amazon recognised that consumers were concerned about the security risks of voice, with almost half of those surveyed citing it as their key concern.

This comes just weeks after Amazon announced major privacy improvements for Alexa, following a major backlash against the company after it was revealed its employees listen to users voice commands, and can even access the location of the person speaking.

Alexa users can now ask for all the recordings of their voice to be deleted.

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