AN INVESTIGATION OF MATURE TRAVELERS’ USAGE INTENTION OF INTELLIGENT VOICE ASSISTANTS IN HOTELS
With the development of advanced technology, intelligent voice assistants (IVAs) have emerged as popular service devices. In the hospitality industry, major hotel chains have installed ‘Alexa for Hospitality’, a representative of IVAs, in guestrooms for customer service. Although the voice-based technology obtained huge attention of the public, there is little understanding of the factors that motivate people to use IVAs in hotel rooms. Additionally, mature travelers’ viewpoints towards this technology got less concern in the academic field, though the rapid growth of aging population makes mature adults a big part of guests staying at hotels.
Considering the forever evolving technology and the especially affected group – mature travelers, traditional technology acceptance theories may not be sufficient to achieve the goal of this study, an updated model is needed. Therefore, a mixed method approach including a qualitative interview and a quantitative study of an online survey is applied. The first stage is the qualitative interview which aims to improve the proposed conceptual model for a comprehensive understanding of mature travelers. An online survey is utilized to assess the conceptual model and the consequent hypotheses. The final model includes five determinants: performance expectancy, effort expectancy, social influence, self-efficacy and anxiety, as well as the mediator of trust that is discovered from the qualitative interview. The findings of the quantitative study show that mature travelers’ intention to use the IVAs at hotels is motivated by performance expectancy and social influence. Trust and behavioral intention partially mediate the relationship between these two variables. Effort expectancy and anxiety show no significant effect on mature travelers’ behavioral intention. This research contributes to the service technology literature with empirical evidences to delineate the behavioral pattern of this customer group. Managerially, the current research provides practical guidelines to the hospitality practitioner for a better understanding of a particular market segmentation: mature travelers.