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Your detailed guide through the voice-first revolution. Turning you into an epic voice user experience designer, developer or all-round, clued-up voice-head. Whether you're an individual, an agency, a brand or a newbie, we'll help you take advantage of the biggest shift in user behaviour since the smartphone.



All about voice testing with Bespoken's John Kelvie (Sep 17th, 2018)

This week, Dustin and I catch up with John Kelvie, CEO and founder of Bespoken, and learn all about the three types of testing that can help you create and sustain great voice experiences.

We discuss:

  • Unit testing:how to test your code locally without having to deploy into the cloud and test through your smart speaker or phone. This can save developers a whole load of time and effort in the development phase.
  • End to end testing:how to automate testing of utterances and intents to make sure you'r...


13 Reasons Why with Tony Lizza (Sep 3rd, 2018)

Tony Lizza, Project Manager at Apollo Matrix, shares his battle scars from working on the technical implementation of the Netflix 13 Reasons Why interactive cinema experience.

This was a voice and video experience that was deployed through the mobile web browser and was used to promote Netflix's biggest show, 13 Reasons Why.

Dustin Coates and I talk to Tony all about the creation of the experience and the technical challenges Tony and his team faced in implementing something so bleeding-edge, i...


The Run Down 001: Alexa settings API, 5 Google Assistant tips and more (Aug 31st, 2018)

We're starting a new feature on VUX World: The Run Down. Dustin Coates and I are getting together each week (or bi-weekly) to discuss the recent happenings in the voice space and how that'll impact designers, developers and brands.

Alexa settings API

We're starting off by discussing the Amazon Alexa feature that developers have been clambering for since 2016: the settings API.

With the settings API, you can access the user's timezone (among other things) and use that within your skill to persona...


All about Voiceitt with Sara Smolley (Aug 27th, 2018)

Alexa Accelerator 2018 featured startup, Voiceitt, gives people with speech impairments their voice back. Today, we're joined by co-founder and VP Strategy, Sara Smolley, to hear all about it.

The There are millions of people across the globe who have non-standard speech. People who've had a stroke or who have multiple sclerosis or cerebral pausey, for example. Voiceitt's advanced speech recognition system, which is deployed through an app, allows those people to speak and be understood.

Once i...


Voice first design strategy with Ben Sauer (Aug 20th, 2018)

Ben Sauer is a Design Strategist who's worked with some of the world's well known brands: Virgin, Tesco, Pearsons, British Gas, Penguin Random House, BBC. Ben worked with Clearleft as a Design Strategist for many years and more recently turned his attention to how voice will change design.

Over the last couple of years, Ben has been focusing on helping brands navigate the voice space and figure out how voice will impact their business, as well as where to start with a voice strategy.

Ben joins ...


Adoption, growth, in-skill purchases and developer rewards with Nick Schwab (Aug 8th, 2018)

The first in a new series called 'Unscripted' where we have off-the-cuff, unscripted conversations with voice first leaders and practitioners to get acquainted, hear their story and find out how they do what they do.

In this first episode, we speak to Alexa Skill developing veteran, Nick Schwab, founder of Invoked Apps, about:

  • User adoption of his Ambient Sound skills (his daily usage is huge!)
  • In skill purchasing and his conversation rates (surprising!)
  • Developer rewards and how it all works
  • How ...


All about conversational commerce with Charlie Cadbury (Aug 6th, 2018)

In this episode, we take a deep dive into conversational commerce: what it is, what's possible and how you can turn conversing strangers into paying customers.

Our guest

Charles Cadbury is the co-founder of Say It Now, a company that helps brands respond the the growing consumer need for immediacy. Charlie's history is impressive. He's seen more than 1,000 client briefs and delivered over 300 digital projects, many of them related to commerce. After working with Lola Tech to create the Dazzle ...


#VOICE18 with Tim Kahle and Dominik Meißner of 169 Labs (Jul 30th, 2018)

We celebrate the 6 month anniversary of VUX World by reviewing the modev Voice Summit event that took place last week in Newark. We anchor on the Voice Summit to take stock of 2018 and look forward to what brands, designers and developers should be focusing on over the next 6 months.

To guide us through #VOICE18, Dustin and I are joined by Tim Kahle and Dominik Meißner, founders of 169 Labs.

Win 2 free tickets to the All About Voice conference in Munich on 12th October

169 Labs are running a voi...


The strategy, creativity and technology triangulation with RAIN's Will Hall and Jason Herndon (Jul 23rd, 2018)

This week, we’re speaking to RAIN agency’s Will Hall and Jason Herndon about how their three pillars of: strategy, creativity and technology, are leading the world's biggest brands to voice first success.

In this episode: voice strategy, creative prowess and technological genius

In this episode, RAIN’s Executive Creative Director, Will Hall, and VP, Engineering, Jason Herndon guide us through the practicalities of how they shape voice strategies and implement voice first solutions for the world...


All about conversation design with PullString's Oren Jacob (Jul 16th, 2018)

This week, we speak to conversation design master, Oren Jacob, about what it takes to create successful conversations with technology.

There are so many complexities in human conversation. When creating an Alexa Skill or Google Assistant Action, most designers try to mimic human conversation. Google itself has taken steps in this direction with the fabricated ‘mm hmm’ moments with Google Duplex.

But does all of this have an actual impact on the user experience? Does it make it better or worse? ...


How to translate your Alexa Skill or Google Assistant Action with Maaike Dufour (Jul 9th, 2018)

Translating your Alexa Skill or Google Assistant Action is about more than translating the words in your script. It's about translating the user experience. Maaike Dufour calls this 'transcreating' and she joins us this week to show us how it's done.

Why should you translate your Alexa Skill or Google Assistant Action?

The world is getting smaller. Technology has enabled us to reach and connect with people from every corner of the earth with ease.

Take this podcast for example. It’s listened to ...


How I built the world's best chatbot with Steve Worswick (Jul 2nd, 2018)

We speak to the creator of the world’s best chatbot about how to design Loabner prize-winning conversational experiences.

Steve Worswick is the creator of Mitsuku, the general conversation chatbot that has won the Loabner prizefor the last two year’s straight.

13 years in the making, Mitsuku passed the Turing testand convinced a panel of judges that it’s human over the course of a 20 minute conversation, two years in a row, to be crowned the world’s best chatbot and conversational agent.

It's fe...


Helping brands bridge the gap with Witlingo's Brielle Nickoloff and Luciana Morais (Jun 25th, 2018)

This week, we're finding out how brands can get started and enter the voice first world of smart speakers and digital assistants.

Me and Dustin Coates are joined by one of the top US voice first agencies, Witlingo. We speak with two Lead VUX designers, Luciana Morias and Brielle Nickoloff, about how your brand can bridge the gap over to voice.

In this episode

Brielle and Luciana share how they guide brands through the process of discovering their voice and establishing a voice first presence.

We ...


All about Speakeasy AI with the Fresh Prince of AI, Frank Schneider (Jun 18th, 2018)

This week, me and Dustin are speaking with the Fresh Prince of AI, Frank Schneider, about how Speakeasy AI aims to deliver the promise of AI in voice (that’s a lot of AI’s).

How many people truly understand what their customers are asking for? Whether it’s in your Alexa Skill, your chatbot or in your IVR, you can’t hope to serve the needs of your users or customers if you don’t understand what they’re trying to do or ask.

Understanding is the most important first step you can take

Once you truly...


All about Alpha Voice with Bryan Colligan (Jun 11th, 2018)

This week, we’re finding out how content creators can have their podcasts and YouTube content indexed and searchable on voice, with Bryan Colligan of Alpha Voice.

With the podcast industry thriving and more people listening to podcasts than ever, more brands are starting to launch their own podcasts. Podcasts are a perfect fit for devices like the Echo and Google Home because they provide ambient entertainment, similar to the widely popular relaxation sounds skills.

Two problems face podcast an...


Voice analytics and Dashbot with Arte Merritt (Jun 4th, 2018)

This week, we’re getting deep into voice analytics and will help you learn more about how you can understand the performance of your voice first experience.

One of the biggest benefits that technology has given us is the ability to understand. To understand whether our latest PPC campaign had an impact on sales. To understand whether our new website increased our leads. To understand whether our pricing tweak made a difference on click through rates. To understand whether our foray into Facebo...


All about Pindrop, VUI design and VUI tuning with Simonie Wilson (May 28th, 2018)

This week, we take a look at the similarities between VUI design for IVR and VUI design for voice assistants. We also explain what VUI tuning is and why it’s important, whilst giving you some tips on how you can tune your voice user interface. We also discuss PinDrop and voice first security.

In this episode

We speak to one of the world’s expert VUI practitioners, Simonie Wilson, to get under the hood of Passport and figure out what it is, how it works, why it’s needed and how you can use it to...


All about BotTalk and how to run a voice first discovery workshop with Andrey Esaulov (May 21st, 2018)

This week, we’re digging into how you can create an Alexa Skill using BotTalk and we give you a template for running a voice first discovery workshop, with SmartHaus Technologies CEO and BotTalk co-founder, Andrey Esaulov.

We discuss the importance of starting with a solid use case and how imperative it is to base your voice app on a real-world scenario that’ll add value to your users.

What turns an average voice experience into an EPIC voice experience? Send us your answers and you could featu...


All about voice search with the SEO Oracle, Dr. Pete (May 14th, 2018)

Dr. Pete, Marketing Scientist at Moz, and world-leading SEO oracle, tells all about the voice search landscape, and how you can rank for searches on digital assistants like Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

This is a jam-packed episode with deep, deep insights, advice and guidance on all things voice search related. We'll give you practical ways to compete to be the answer that’s read out in voice first searches, as well as some notions on the current and potential future benefit that could b...


All about Voysis and the GUI to VUI transition with Brian Colcord (May 7th, 2018)

We’ve covered plenty of voice first designand developmenton this podcast. Well, that’s what the podcast is, so we’re bound to! Most of what we’ve discussed has largely been voice assistant or smart speaker-focused. We haven’t covered a huge amount of voice first application in the browser and on mobile, until now.

Mic check

You’ll have noticed the little mic symbol popping up on a number of websites lately. It’s in the Google search bar, it’s on websites such as EchoSim and Spotify are trialing...