virtual assistant

(redirected from voice-activated assistant)
Also found in: Dictionary, Financial.

virtual assistant

(1) An individual who performs administrative functions for clients. See human virtual assistant.

(2) An application that lets people ask questions by speaking in their natural language and listening to verbal answers. Although virtual assistants are in tablets and desktop computers, they caused the smartphone to become an incredibly useful electronic companion. No matter where people are, they can ask about anything that is public knowledge and get an answer.

Also called a "personal assistant," "digital assistant," "intelligent agent" and "voice assistant," Apple's Siri popularized the concept in 2011. Siri was followed by Google Now/Google Assistant in Android and Chrome devices, Cortana in Windows, Alexa in Amazon's Echo and Facebook M. The Viv platform was created to revolutionize this technology (see Viv). See Siri, Google Now, Google Assistant, Cortana, Amazon Echo and Facebook M.

Virtual assistants cannot only answer questions, they can make phone calls, calendar appointments and reminders and set alarms. The more information kept in the phone, the more personalized the results. Virtual assistants are the first embodiment of artificial intelligence used on a daily basis by hundreds of millions of people (see AI). Virtual assistants are increasingly called "chatbots" (see chatbot).

Heavy Lifting in the Cloud
The virtual assistant is driven by one or more semantic knowledge bases on the Internet as well as the data in the user's device. Over time, the virtual assistant becomes more tailored to the individual. See knowledge base, Semantic Web, AI and S Voice.
References in periodicals archive ?
Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), a United States-based automaker, is adding a voice-activated assistant to its SYNC 3 infotainment system, providing navigation guidance to drivers through their own voice commands.
More than half (53 percent) of voice-activated virtual assistant owners (and 60 percent of Millennials who own them) say they buy in-store less after acquiring a voice-activated assistant, according to the research.
Voice-to-command technology was an instant hit when Apple released Siri, its voice-activated assistant, on the iPhone 4S.
Metcalf continued, "Although Apple introduced SIRI, its voice-activated assistant, it only works on the iPhone 4S model.
As LG unveiled its lineup of smart appliances, executive David VanderWaal quickly lost rapport with his onstage partner, the cute voice-activated assistant CLOi.
One of the best features of the Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones is the Google Assistant, Google's own voice-activated assistant that competes with Apple's Siri.
There are still some problems with which device or voice-activated assistant does the best job you can read about a head-to-head test done on Appaccessories that was done in September last year.
19 -- Apple's voice-activated assistant, Siri, is a nifty app that can give you directions, search the Web, and occasionally throw some shade.
Kate," the virtual, voice-activated assistant available users want to send or receive messages over the phone, guides them through the service's robust call management capabilities, which users also can access from a password-protected Web site (www.
Huawei, the third largest smartphone manufacturer in the world, is reportedly working on its own digital voice-activated assistant.
com), a new service that delivers the power and convenience of the company's award-winning, voice-activated Assistant directly to small businesses and busy individuals for $24.
In fact, the formerly top cellphone maker is not planning to position its voice-activated assistant as a direct rival to Amazon's Alexa, Apple's Siri, Microsoft's Cortana and Google's Google Assistant.