A new report projects that the smart speaker market will continue its torrid growth, with Google and Amazon battling for dominance and Apple stuck in a distant third place. According to Canalys, the number of smart speakers in use will come close to 100 million by the end of 2018, up from under 50 million at the end of 2017. Canalys predicts the market will more than double again to hit 225 million units by 2020. Along the way, market leader Amazon will continue to see its market share slip, Canalys says. The firm gives Amazon Echo devices about 50 percent of the installed base in 2018, but by 2022 that is expected to fall to 34 percent.
Google surpassed Amazon in smart speaker sales for the first time in Q1 2018, according to research from Canalys. Google shipped 3.2 million Google Home and Home Mini devices, while Amazon shipped 2.5 million Echo devices. The overall global market grew 210 percent year-over-year, with shipments reaching 9 million units. Google's smart speaker sales grew even faster, at 483 percent year-over-year. The Mountain View company secured just over 32 percent of the market for Q1 2018.
It's easy to imagine a world in which "Alexa" is synonymous with talking computers, or Echo with smart speakers--just as Kleenex is synonymous with facial tissue, Xerox with copy machines, or Google with online search. They need a better name.) That's almost the world we live in today, thanks to the dramatic early success of Amazon's pioneering smart speaker and the surprisingly capable digital assistant that animates it. It's true that voice-powered smart speakers are on the path to ubiquity: Analysts predict that most U.S. households will eventually have one. But at a time when sales are booming around the world, it's becoming clear that Amazon's first-mover advantage wasn't built to last.
The number of smart speaker users is growing at a compound annual growth rate of 47.9%, according to a new report by eMarketer. That's faster than any tech product since the smartphone, and will result in more smart speaker users than wearable tech users this year. In the U.S. alone, that number will be over 90 million. Smart speaker sales are trending up ... and quickly. Of course, smart speakers have an advantage.