UAE Consumers Open to Use of AI Tools in Video Calls


Uniphore released survey results revealing UAE consumer perspectives on the challenges and opportunities for video conversations.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the world has seen increased adoption of video calls in nearly every area of life. The survey identified a disconnect between the benefits of video conversations and the unintended challenges it creates. The results also indicated a strong willingness amongst UAE consumers to adopt artificial intelligence (AI) technology to drive improvements in their experiences. 

When considering the rise of video calls throughout the past 18+ months, local consumers revealed a mix of both frustration and appreciation for what video conversations have to offer. 

Benefits of Video Calls Include More Effective and Meaningful Connections

Respondents noted some clear benefits of having conversations on video including better engagement rates. When using video, a majority (74 per cent) of respondents indicated they felt the participants ranged from somewhat, very or extremely engaged with them. Further, 45 per cent of participants said video calls provide them with a more meaningful connection with others. This is especially important for conversations that require empathy or trust – for example, connecting with family, telemedicine appointments, and engaging with banking institutions or financial advisors.   

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The Dark Side of Video Calls: Multitasking and Distractions Are Everywhere

More than half (56 per cent) of UAE consumers reported they spent significantly more time on video last year than in prior years. Participants admitted to doing a wide range of nonprofessional multitasking, personal tasks and other projects during video calls, including web surfing, online shopping and social media scanning.

Surprisingly, they also reported the following activities during video calls:

  • Reading social media/online news (39 per cent)
  • Cleaning the house (37 per cent)
  • Watching YouTube or other video streaming – 37 per cent)
  • Shopping online (32 per cent)
  • Going to the bathroom (31 per cent)

When asked about the factors they dislike about conducting a video call, respondents stated boredom and that they would prefer being able to multitask during meetings (29 per cent). Being ‘camera-ready’ was also identified as a key issue: 35 per cent of UAE respondents dislike having to ‘get ready’ while 29 per cent don’t like seeing themselves on camera. Lastly, respondents noted physical and mental fatigue as a challenge with video calls – nearly one-third (33 per cent) of respondents claimed it’s hard to feel motivated and energised and another 31 per cent struggle to tell if others are engaged or not.

“Since the start of the pandemic we’ve witnessed the widespread adoption of video conversations across personal and professional engagements. As the survey results revealed, there is still work to do to make virtual interactions as seamless and effective as in-person conversations,” said Umesh Sachdev, CEO and co-founder of Uniphore. “There is a clear need for additional tools and capabilities to enhance higher degrees of people-to-people understanding. Through AI and automation technology, companies and business leaders can create better experiences for customers, pick up on nonverbal cues that they may have missed, and provide insights using data that is decipherable and actionable.”