Apple’s HomePod estimated to own 5% share of U.S. smart speaker market

Apple's HomePod
Apple’s HomePod

Apple’s HomePod accounts for 5% of the estimated smart speaker installed base in the United States in the second quarter of 2019, according to new data shared today by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP).

Juli Clover for MacRumors:

Amazon continues to be the number one smart speaker vendor in the U.S., followed by Google. Amazon Echo devices accounted for 70 percent of smart speakers in the United States during the quarter, while Google Home devices accounted for 25 percent.

The smart speaker market has seen strong growth, with the U.S. installed base of 76 million speakers up nine percent from 70 million units in the March 2019 quarter. Growth is also up significantly compared to last June, when there were an estimated 50 million smart speakers in the United States.

Most people who own smart speakers have less expensive models like the Echo Dot and the Google Home Mini, with these units accounting for more than 50 percent of smart speakers in the U.S. during the quarter.

MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, Apple does not play in the low-end $50 so-called “smart speaker” market, so an estimated 5% share, comprised of the very best customers, those with disposable income and the proven will to spend it (and those most likely to subscribe to things like Apple Music), is better than it sounds (especially with very little to no real marketing for HomePod).

12 Comments

  1. And yet the sound of the Amazon echo is not bad, and Alexa is leaps and bounds smarter than Siri/ then there are units like the Sonos with Alexa built in.

  2. Right now I’m listening to my Vizio 5.1 soundbar, streaming SiriusXM Classic Rock Party over Bluetooth. Sounds great, cost just over half what a HomePod costs. 5.1 sound for my blurays and cable movies, without having to buy extra units and wait for a software update.

    1. I owned a Vizio 5.1 soundbar. The sound was awful and I threw it away. I am waiting for an upscale HomePod. I guess it all depends on the degree of sound quality that you desire.

  3. Apple’s shown they can be in this arena. The question is whether or not they want to be player over the the long term, and how they see the market evolving (sales and technology wise).

    They don’t need a $50 model to do that, but a range of 2-3 models, maybe starting at $149 give or take – with some clever engineering features in various models should establish their bona fides (or not).

    Interoperability ought to be something they keep examining as well going forward in that case.

    Also a model with a screen seems like something they might want to try if these are gaining traction.

    The goal (near-medium term) might be something like 15-20% market share, 25-33% profit share.

    1. Arghh things missing and doubled. I’ve come around on the new site design (kudos! better in a number of useful ways), but still long for at least a few minute editing window…..

    2. Still can’t understand why Apple doesn’t make their iPads expecially the mini home speaker compatible. Create a dock or range of docks with increasing capabilities and make the iPad go into ‘auto pod mode mode’ when placed on it with Siri becoming the dominant access mode and you have something that potentially becomes much better than the opposition at least as and when Siri is up to the job and adds flexibility and value to the iPad itself expands its market and creates a market for accessories including the dock and means they don’t have to create a direct competing product to the opposition at prices with little upside while still competing with little extra effort in the market place on a potentially massive scale. As long as it worked well the marketing chatter and awareness alone would be positive for Apple overall.

      1. Might be a bad idea. The microphone on the iPad may not be up to the task of Siri correctly hearing what you ask beyond a relatively close distance or correct orientation.

  4. I’m surprised HomePod has that much market share with Amazon practically giving away smart speakers. I understand Apple doesn’t care much about anything other than iPhones but Apple needs to learn to be competitive and not let other companies run roughshod all over them. Apple needs to look at the big picture and not just some nickel-and-dime view. Other companies have multiple models of smart speakers and that’s just smart marketing. Apple with its one-size-fits-all strategy just isn’t going to cut it, especially when that one size is LARGE. (large meaning expensive) I honestly don’t see how it would hurt Apple to sell a less expensive smart speaker for those who are more interested in non-audiophile listening devices. Whatever, I’ll give Apple the benefit of the doubt they know what they’re doing.

    I don’t want any smart speakers in my home so Apple and Amazon aren’t getting my money for home-based eavesdropping devices. I’m not all that comfortable talking to computers and there’s really not much need for me to do something like that. I understand if Apple doesn’t want to sell low-cost smart speakers but Wall Street will just look at Apple’s smart speaker market share percentage and chalk it up as another reason not to buy Apple stock. Meanwhile, Amazon will be praised to high heaven for owning the home IoT. Sometimes I wonder if Apple is a bit narrow-minded to what it deems unnecessary. Wouldn’t more listening devices in the wild be more helpful for teaching Siri to learn and understand things just as a person who gets around more has a chance to pick up more knowledge and experience? Amazon must have 100 smart devices for every 1 Apple has, by now. Echo Dots for $25. C’mon, Apple, at least do something sensible.

  5. I wonder what Apple will say when people realise that Siri discussions, although temporarily suspended, have always been human reviewed and are reportedly going to be again in the future with additional unspecified “privacy protections” in place.

    Prediction:

    Apple will “wait and see” how the market evolves. Frankly it’s amazing that such a paranoid world allows these home spies in their homes.

    The Homepod will be offered with no product improvements and little or no price adjustments for the next 3 years. No version 2.0, no enhanced home automation features, no Airport integration, zero hardware changes whatsoever. At that point, the Homepod will unceremoniously disappear from the Apple Store. When executives are asked about it in interviews, they will say very little, quickly attempting to steer the conversation to the next watch or Product Red accessory Apple has to offer. Probably just say they painted themselves into an acoustic corner. Beats will instead offer a few cheap portable bluetooth speakers with high price tags.

    Will an Apple product manager pull his head out of his ass and realize that the Homepod is practically worthless for any multi-brand household, and far from ideal when attempting to use it with many if not most current and legacy Apple products? Would it have been too costly for Apple to allow one to dock/charge an iPhone to the Homepod so that there was a visual interface for those who like that kind of thing? Apparently nobody in the big donut thought of that. 100% reliance on Siri and bluetooth to do anything, with no visible indicators or human interface , yeah that sounds like a highly accessible device. Way to alienate all the Apple customers who intuitively understand visual interfaces that Apple used to be good at offering (albeit the interface for music on iOS absolutely blows) — yeah, that was stupid.

    What’s the point of a “wireless speaker”? It cannot possibly be to improve over legacy hifi systems. is it supposed to make your home decor more pretty? The damn things still have to be plugged into a wall socket, they are definitely not wireless. Do you really enjoy the wireless latency and slow pairing & switching? I don’t. I also know great audio (B&W Nautilus speakers playing even as I write). The sound of a Homepod is not that great. No soundbar is that I’ve auditioned yet. Good for the price, maybe, but horribly inadequate for audiophiles and the majority of well-heeled Apple cusomers. Customers that should know that monopole acoustics bouncing beams off your ceiling and walls will always be inferior to properly arrayed speakers in the round.

    FYI, this is the A/V reviewing room of just one Hollywood production studio. See a difference between this and your cute little homepod? Of course this is more extreme than any household, but this is what professional audio looks like. Don’t pretend a homepod is anything more than a kitchentop appliance to serve rental compressed DRMed Beats Music files at relatively low quality standards. If that’s good enough for you, great, enjoy it while Apple sells them.
    https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-9bbe48480670f4b2de2c0b0363fdabbf-c

  6. I still don’t understand the purpose of a smart speaker. I’ve got Siri on my Apple watch and on my iPhone if I want to know something or if I want to play music on my Bluetooth speaker.

  7. Bluetooth is not the best medium for music playback. Wifi is superior in quality and reliability. I only have HomePod for those reasons and even though Apple may be listening to Siri, I TRUST Apple 1st by leaps and bounds over all other companies, Google is last place and would never activate anything with Google’s assistance as they have proven multiple time over the years, they do not value privacy. To each, their own, but buyer beware….

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.