Google beats Amazon in smart speaker market: Canalys

Google Smart speaker market share Q1 2018Smart speaker shipments reached 9 million units with 210 percent growth in the first quarter of 2018, according to a Canalys report.

Google has shipped 3.2 million units of its Google Home and Home Mini devices, beating Amazon for the first time for the top spot in the global smart speaker market.

Amazon shipped 2.5 million units of Echo devices.

The US market share fell below 50 percent, partly due to Google and Amazon’s focus on expanding beyond their home markets.

Vendors shipped 1.8 million smart speakers into the channel in Q1 2018 in China. Korea overtook the UK to become the third largest market with 730,000 shipments.
Smart speaker market share Q1 2018Alibaba is in the third position and retained its number one position in China with 1.1 million Tmall Genie speaker shipments in Q1 2018.

Hattie He, research analyst at Canalys, said China’s smart speaker market is growing, with shipments up sequentially by more than 60 percent.

Xiaomi, whose main business is selling smartphones, shipped over 600,000 of its Xiao AI speakers to China in Q1.

Google has explored new go-to-market strategies by partnering with service providers, such as Jio and ACT Fibernet, to reach users in India.

“Google has several advantages over Amazon that have helped it move ahead,” said Canalys Analyst Ben Stanton.

Google’s biggest advantage is in the channel. Mobile operators and retailers tend to prioritize Google’s speakers over those from Amazon, as Amazon is in the tricky position of being a direct competitor.

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