Flipkart introduces voice-assisted shopping in Hindi and English on Supermart, its grocery store

Our Bureau Bengaluru | Updated on June 09, 2020

The logo of India's e-commerce firm Flipkart   -  REUTERS

Flipkart, has introduced a voice assistant on its grocery store, Supermart, enabling consumers to discover and buy products more easily, using voice commands.

The voice assistant for grocery is currently available to all English and Hindi users using Flipkart’s mobile app on Android devices and will be gradually made available on iOS and the website.

This development comes three months after rival Amazon went live with voice-enabled shopping in English powered by Alexa for products across categories for all of its 100 million plus Android App customers.

Flipkart undertook a detailed ethnographic study for over five months in multiple towns and cities to gather insights and opportunities that led to the development of a voice assistant for grocery.

The voice-first conversational AI platform built by Flipkart’s in-house technology team has solutions for speech recognition, natural language understanding, machine translation and text-to-speech for Indian languages. These solutions are capable of understanding regional languages such as Hindi, e-commerce categories and products, and tasks such as searching for a product, understanding product details, and placing an order. The AI platform is built to automatically detect the language spoken by the user, and in real-time transcribe, translate, transliterate and understand the user’s intent to have engaging shopping-related conversations in various Indian languages.

“As a homegrown e-commerce company, Flipkart has been at the forefront of building India-first innovations and Video, Vernacular and Voice have been the key pillars of solving for the adoption of e-commerce in India. While we have seen great adoption for our video and vernacular offerings, the next step in that direction is to solve for the voice capability for e-commerce” said Jeyandran Venugopal, Chief Product and Technology Officer, Flipkart, in a statement.

Manish Kumar, SVP Grocery and General Merchandise & Furniture, Flipkart, said, “Grocery is one of the most under penetrated categories in Indian e-commerce and has a huge potential to grow and solve for customer adoption. Our grocery business has grown phenomenally over the last year, making this the right time for us to introduce the Voice Assistant capability.”

Published on June 09, 2020

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