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Information Technologist (The)

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Awareness and use of digital assistants by University of Ilorin postgraduate students

R. A. Oyekunle, O. V. Mejabi, T. B. Babalola, H. A. Uthman

Abstract


Digital assistants (DA) are an emerging class of intelligent software agents that help people with communication, information and time management. They assist users in performing specific tasks and are able to communicate, cooperate, discuss, and guide people; and the use of DAs has gained ground amongst research students. This study explored the awareness and the use of DAs by postgraduate students of the University of Ilorin, Nigeria. A survey research was adopted for this research. Stratified sampling was used to collect data from 117 postgraduate students of the Faculty of Communication and Information Sciences which constituted 40% of the entire postgraduate students in the Faculty, using a structured questionnaire. Descriptive statistics was used to analyze the data collected. The study revealed that a considerable amount of respondents are aware and have made use of DA software. The most commonly used brand of DA is Google due to its security and ease of configuration. Although there are several tasks users assign to DA‟s, the task that was common to all respondents was using the DA to find information on people, places and locations. The respondents are of the opinion that DA‟s are very helpful in organizing daily tasks and in enhancing users‟ overall productivity, however, there exist the problems of requiring Internet connection at all times and accent differences and intonation onvoice input recognition. This research underscores the importance of local content in the development of software applications such as the DA.

Keywords: Digital, Assistants, Postgraduate, Students, Phones, Voice, Recognition.




AJOL African Journals Online