Chinese brands slowly gaining market share,
while U.S. brands retain leading positions
Sales of smart speakers in 2020 are estimated to grow by 17% to 170 million units. Comparatively, the growth rate in 2019 was a remarkable 70%, reaching a total of 146.9 million units, according to research analyzed by ComprarAcciones.com, an online Spanish stock buying guide. The global smart speaker market was valued at $11.9 billion in 2019 and could be worth $35.5 billion by 2025.
Strategy Analytics data reveals that 28 million smart speakers were sold globally in the first quarter of 2020. This 8.2% increase was the slowest growth on record.
U.S. brands fared better than Chinese brands in Q1 2020, yet the data shows Chinese brands gaining inroads. Sales of Chinese brands Baidu, Alibaba, and Xiaomi contracted by 2.7% year over year collectively, while U.S. brands Amazon, Google, and Apple together grew by 10%. Compared to Q1 2019, Chinese consumers bought 300,000 fewer units in Q1 2020. Similarly, in Q4 2019, total unit sales in China totaled 13.08 million compared to 10.9 million in Q1 2020.
Google and Amazon held a 75% market share in 2019. But in Q1 2020, Amazon, Google, and Apple together had a 47% share. In Q4 2019, Baidu, Alibaba, and Xiaomi collectively held a 30% share, growing to 38% by Q1 2020.
The second quarter saw global sales growth, but Amazon and Google lost market share despite leadership positioning. Sales increased by 6% to reach 30.0 million units. Amazon was the leading vendor during the period with a 21.6% share of the market. Comparatively, in 2018, Amazon’s market share was 33.7%, dropping to 26.2% in 2019. On the other hand, Google’s market share dropped from 25.9% in 2018 to 20.3% in 2019 and further down to 17.1% in Q2 2020.
In terms of unit sales, Amazon grew by 17% year over year in Q1 2020 while Google grew by 20%. Baidu grew by 171%, Alibaba by 94%, and Xiaomi by 167% in the same period. Amazon, however, continues to hold the dominant role in the U.S. with 69.7% of the local market, according to eMarketer.