Who is winning the battle of the smart speakers?

Who is winning the battle of the smart speakers?

During the first quarter of the year, Apple shipped 600,000 HomePod units, earning the company 6 percent market share, according to Strategy Analytics. An Emarketer report from May 2017 found that Amazon dominates the voice-controlled speaker market in the U.S. at 70.6%, while Google Home captured 23.8%. However, as Amazon and Google marketed their products as smart first and foremost, their mini versions work well, but Apple placed a greater focus on their audio quality of their speaker, and this superior element could be lost with a smaller version.

Amazon holds 43.6 percent of the market, which is down from the 81.8 percent it held during the first quarter of 2017. That's a massive increase from the same period last year, where Google only sold 0.3 million units (709% growth year-over-year).

The analysts use the word "shipped", which may mean that the actual sales of smart speakers HomePod even less, writes The Verge. Bloomberg reported in April that the company has been forced to lower sales forecasts and cut orders with suppliers, with some Apple stores said to be selling "fewer than 10 HomePods a day". While Alibaba shipped 700,000 units of smart speakers, Xiaomi shipped 200,000 units in the first quarter of the year. "Alibaba and Xiaomi are leading the way in China and their strength in the domestic market alone is proving enough to propel them into the global top five", says David Watkins, Director at Strategy Analytics. Now, a new report claims that Google is slowly catching up to Alexa while Apple lands far behind the rest of the pack...

With the new smart speaker from Samsung due to land in August of this year, Amazon's market share may suffer further knocks.

"We are clearly heading towards to a time in the not too distant future when voice becomes a standard mode of technology interaction alongside established approaches like keyboard, mouse and touchscreen", Strategy Analytics vice president David Mercer said in a statement.

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