Story image

Canalys: Smart speaker installed base market to hit 2018 milestone

10 Jul 18

Canalys predicts that the booming smart speaker installed base market will hit a major milestone by the end of this year as the number of installation continues its unprecedented growth.

The analyst firm says that the smart speaker installed base will hit 100 million units by the end of 2018 and is on track to reach 225 million units by 2020.

Canalys also believes that manufacturers are well aware of the power of ecosystem lock-in and have actually waged a fierce price war to build the largest installed base, says research analyst Vincent Thielke.

Amazon Echo devices will account for more than 50% of the installed base in 2018, followed by Google’s Home series (30%). However Apple has work to do, as its HomePod models will trail behind at 4%.

“The rapid growth of the smart speaker installed base is itself a growth driver,” adds Canalys analyst Ben Stanton.

“Amazon and Google are desperate to prove the scale and reach of their platforms to developers. As the Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant speaker installed bases grow, the companies can make a more compelling case.

“And as developers invest in voice and try to cash-in on the creation of new experiences, smart speaker adoption will grow. The battle for developers’ attention is vital for Google and Amazon. It will determine the speed at which they can appeal to new demographics, move into new industry verticals and gain traction in new countries.”

The United States leads smart speaker adoption and Amazon has taken advantage of that, there are international opportunities for the IT channel.

 “Amazon and Google will now take their devices beyond the smart home and deploy them in a range of new scenarios,” comments Thielke.

“Their business development teams are targeting commercial opportunities, such as hotels, offices, gyms and airports, with initiatives such as Amazon’s Alexa for Business and Alexa for Hospitality. These deployments are a major opportunity for the IT channel to develop solutions and provide technical skills and services that customers may lack.”

Canalyst research analyst Hattie Hee adds that China is a ‘nascent’ smart speaker market, but it is a “sleeping giant”.

“Local players, such as Alibaba and Xiaomi, are investing heavily. In the second half of 2018, sales promotions will be an important driver, as vendors anticipate a surge of shipments during the 6.18 Shopping Festival and Singles Day in November,” Hee says.

“As competition intensifies, Chinese vendors will expand their product portfolios to hit more price points and offer a greater range of capabilities. But for long-term growth in China, a more complete voice service and better user engagement are just as important. China has massive potential, with more than 450 million households.”

White box losing out to brands in 100 GE switching market
H3C, Cisco and Huawei have all gained share in the growing competition in the data centre switching market.
Gartner names newcomer Exabeam a leader in SIEM
The vendor landscape for SIEM is evolving, with recent entrants bringing technologies optimised for analytics use cases.
52mil users affected by Google+’s second data breach
Google+ APIs will be shut down within the next 90 days, and the consumer platform will be disabled in April 2019 instead of August 2019 as originally planned.
Genesys PureCloud generates triple-digit revenue growth year on year
In Australia and New Zealand, the company boosted PureCloud revenue by nearly 100%.
Symantec releases neural network-integrated USB scanning station
Symantec Industrial Control System Protection Neural helps defend against USB-borne cyber attacks on operational technology.
IDC: Standalone VR headset shipments grow 428.6% in 3Q18
The VR headset market returned to growth in 3Q18 after four consecutive quarters of decline and now makes up 97% of the combined market.
Kidd made Ingram Micro executive for cloud
Barbara Kidd has been promoted to cloud general manager as the company signs new vendors to its Cloud Marketplace.
Open source will be the next big thing for the channel
Channel firms should be on the lookout for opportunities across open source and more diverse software offerings like software-defined containers and storage.