Apple’s HomePod Places Sixth in Global Smart Speaker Market in Q4 2019

DeepIn2U

macrumors 603
May 30, 2002
6,386
1,819
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Would be interesting to see their share of total smart speakers profits. I'm willing to bet they're taking home at least 20% of total smart speaker profits with only a 5% market share.
Considering the earlier news about HomePod this week I'm quite impressed! And very happy I have one HomePod ... looking at picking up another 2 before this year ends (stereo pair for living room with ATV4 and 1 for the bedroom .... cause "Ray's Boom Boom Room" ~ Eddie Murphy's Life ) ;) lol
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
21,330
9,294
Gotta be in it to win it
The HP is not a high-end speaker. That's not a knock on the HP. That's just what is. It's priced decidedly as a lower mid-tier offering.
Correct, the price is not high-end considering some wireless speakers go into the thousands, but the sound quality is very good and according to many reviews just beats the competition. YMMV on this one.

Still too high at release for what it is imo, but neither the pricing nor the speaker are high-end. It is priced higher than most of the speakers it's being compared against.

I think it's overpriced because it's a niche device with limited appeal that didn't have to be so limited. $200 for an ecosystem locked speaker that has nice sound... fair, imo. $3-350? Naaaah.
Well, I said yes and want more for the house, even though I have a Bose sound-mini and a Sony boom box thingy along with an airplay2 home theater. I like I don't need my idevice to play music from the HP, but I can stream if I wanted and can even be on LTE to stream.

Multiple smart speakers have acoustical awareness. It's not really the differentiation you seem to think it is.
Depending on how good the awareness is, might differentiate the HP.

The homepod is a nice sounding speaker that was unfortunately hobbled with the lack of i/o. With proper i/o the reach of the homepod would have been much greater. Probably doubling(at least) the current market share imo considering it's still in limited release. If Apple offers another version, I'm almost certain they won't neglect the i/o.
Maybe, there is no reason not to open up B/T, for example.
 

DeepIn2U

macrumors 603
May 30, 2002
6,386
1,819
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Maybe try giving value with functioning AI?
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Why?! Amazon Echo works when you talk to it. Siri does not.
Maybe because it functions great at it's primary namesake: a speaker.
Wireless .... great
Speaker sound quality excellent! Approaching that of 6" studio analog speakers with a trip circuit.
AI ... sure lacklustre to some. sorry to the majority of internet users across the globe.
- for me ... talking to an AI for simplistic things I can do on my phone/watch or computer in very minimal time yet 100% accuracy seems just odd: Time, Weather/wind-chill, read my last sms/iMessage/email, set a timer ... set multiple timers, set an alarm, tell me a joke (I have comedy movies for that but hey I don't have that great a sense of humour. Read me an article on the internet ... I'll go for that.

Then again maybe I read 1 too many Dune books from Frank Herber to remember this quote [Bitlerian Jihad] "Tho shalt not create a computer in the likeness of the human mind"
 

JWD

macrumors member
Jan 20, 2012
59
118
Complete Apple failure. I get the tough competition from Google and Amazon, but I do not even recognize the other 2 brands that beat out Apple. It’s not Apple’s style to be last, greed got the best of them here. I’m personally tired of paying top dollar for anything less than stellar. If HomePod was lower cost or even higher performing I’m sure they would sell.
 
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Ghost31

macrumors 68030
Jun 9, 2015
2,629
3,542
You've never used a HomePod.
I have a HomePod

“hey Siri. Play new music by Halsey”

“waiting. Just a moment. Can not complete your request”

“hey Siri play some music”

“just amoment. Sorry”

really. It’s just pitiful sometimes. I was cooking and wanted to set a timer and it still wouldn’t until way later. Even reset the damn thing. Also try using it as a sound bar and it’s out of sync a lot of the time. This is not a super polished Apple product.
 

incoherent_1

macrumors regular
Oct 19, 2016
187
267
The relevant Sonos speakers (the One and the Beam) aren't really marketed so much as "smart speakers" but rather as "whole-home speakers that can do Alexa/GoogleHome".
Doesn't change the fact that the functionality is the same — given that, shouldn’t it (or at least the models with support for those features) be included?
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I have a HomePod

“hey Siri. Play new music by Halsey”

“waiting. Just a moment. Can not complete your request”

“hey Siri play some music”

“just amoment. Sorry”

really. It’s just pitiful sometimes. I was cooking and wanted to set a timer and it still wouldn’t until way later. Even reset the damn thing. Also try using it as a sound bar and it’s out of sync a lot of the time. This is not a super polished Apple product.
I really wish HomePod (and Siri) were better products. I don’t know why Apple struggles to be competitive with speakers, but it just feels like iPod HiFi all over again.

Maybe they need to bring the AirPods team over to shake up the speakers department. They’re obviously killing it.
 

PickUrPoison

macrumors 603
Sep 12, 2017
6,019
7,334
Sunnyvale, CA
Doesn't change the fact that the functionality is the same — given that, shouldn’t it (or at least the models with support for those features) be included?
In past years, 2018 for instance, the Strategy Analytics smart speaker report has mentioned other competitors include Samsung, Sonos and Bose. My guess is Sonos is lumped in with Other. These are global numbers, US would look quite different since I doubt Baidu, Xaomi or Alibaba would break through into the top 5.
 

DoctorTech

macrumors 6502a
Jan 6, 2014
573
1,263
Indianapolis, IN
Would be interesting to see their share of total smart speakers profits. I'm willing to bet they're taking home at least 20% of total smart speaker profits with only a 5% market share.
I looked the data up several months ago when MacRumors ran a related article. Based on estimates of the components and assembly costs, and the fact that a lot of Amazon Echos were sold at substantial discounts during the holiday season, Apple's ~5% of market share accounts for well over 50% of the product category profits. Amazon and Google are likely "subsidizing" the selling price of their smart home speakers through the use of data they are able to collect and repurpose (to put it very politely).
 
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PowerMacBook

macrumors member
Jun 23, 2008
47
41
I would love to have two but they are not sold here in The Netherlands, and the Euro prices are always much higher than the dollar price anyway. In Germany a Homepod costs 329 euro ($356) .
you can buy in France or Germany: I have nit clue why they don't sell them in Belgium or The Netherlands, very strange indeed.
Euro prices are always much higher.
 

crsh1976

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2011
953
671
Two years from now, this will be a very different situation. Apple will either be at the top of the list or not on the list at all.
Apple ought to move fast and drastically improve Siri then; the HomePod is praised for its sound quality, that's fine but not exactly the only point in a smart speaker, especially when you can have sound quality AND a better assistant elsewhere.

I'm a little worried about the lack of direction with this product tho, Apple barely pushes it, and Siri still sucks.
 

PickUrPoison

macrumors 603
Sep 12, 2017
6,019
7,334
Sunnyvale, CA
you can buy in France or Germany: I have nit clue why they don't sell them in Belgium or The Netherlands, very strange indeed.
Euro prices are always much higher.
Prices in the EU include VAT tax. That €329 includes €56 of VAT. Before tax, the price is €273, which is $296. So it’s $3 cheaper there than it is here in the States.
 

laurieballard

macrumors member
Apr 12, 2016
44
33
We are an 'Apple Household' as such. Macbooks, Ipads, iPhones, Apple TV etc.

I looked at the homepod but wanted a system in the lounge, not just a single speaker so opted for Sonos.

Im sure the homepod is great for a bedroom etc but I want a system i can build on to get to 5.1, hence the Sonos.
 

kis

macrumors 68000
Aug 10, 2007
1,702
764
Switzerland
They're not sold in most places of the world although they do support most languages without an issue. I'm not quite sure what Apple's product strategy is with those.

On the upside, I believe that they've actually improved a bit over the last few months. Sometimes they are now able to give answers to simple questions. And mine do recognize my wife's voice but won't recognize mine. With google home speakers it was the other way round :)
 

Shanghaichica

macrumors G4
Apr 8, 2013
11,542
8,120
UK
Whether it’s overpriced or not comes down to why the user bought it in the first place. If it’s being bought as a general smart speaker that will perform many functions, with music playback being just one of those features and not be most important one then it’s overpriced. However if music playback is the main priority then it’s reasonably priced.


I have homepods, echos and google home devices all over my house. The HomePod sounds the best for music playback and does a few things that the others can’t do, namely sending text and what’s app messages using my voice. It can also locate all of my Apple devices and generally integrates better with my Apple devices than the others do. The google home is better at general facts and information and also controls my chromecast. My TV can be off. I can request for a specific TV shoe or movie to be played and it will turn on my TV, switch inputs if necessary and then start playing back the show I asked for. I wish the HomePod would do the same with my Apple TV. The echos are food for playing back my audiobooks. Aside for the dots and home minis I also have a regular echo and a google nest hub. They both sound better than the dots and minis and the regular echo sounds very decent. Although both don’t sound anywhere near as good as the HomePod. However I am aware that google has the max and Amazon has he studio. Both of which offer much better sound. So it’s possible that their higher end offerings are equal to the HomePod in sound quality.
 

Pakaku

macrumors 68020
Aug 29, 2009
2,215
2,230
I honestly had no idea there were more than three or four "smart speaker" brands anyways
 

Shanghaichica

macrumors G4
Apr 8, 2013
11,542
8,120
UK
Two years from now, this will be a very different situation. Apple will either be at the top of the list or not on the list at all.
I think Apple will struggle to overtake amazon and google due to pricing. The dot and minis are impulse buys, only ever costing £49 but are often reduced to as little as £30. That’s if they are paid for at all. Google and amazon often give these for free. Hell in the past 4 months alone google have sent me 2 free minis. Apple will not be able to compete with this. However that’s not to say that the HomePod is not a good device and cannot be successful in its own right.
 

honglong1976

macrumors 65816
Jul 12, 2008
1,191
727
UK
Because they don't have a cheaper speaker. It's going to be difficult to catch up with Amazon and Google now. Especially as they were giving them away. How to compete with that? It would be interesting to know the profit for each one.

Maybe that's Apple strategy. Launch different products, AW, Airpods, Homepod and focus on the ones that make the most money/are popular and kill off the rest in the near future.

Or maybe they have a budget one in the pipelines!
 

gnasher729

macrumors P6
Nov 25, 2005
16,648
3,315
Would be interesting to see their share of total smart speakers profits. I'm willing to bet they're taking home at least 20% of total smart speaker profits with only a 5% market share.
It's not so much the profits that you should be interested in as a consumer, but revenue. If someone sells six times more $50 speakers than Apple sells $299 speakers, then it is the same revenue.

And I think Amazon's speaker revenue is about 10% of Apple's AirPod revenue :) Unit sales for AirPods are higher than this whole category. And there was an article saying that AirPods are now about the same as iPod sales in the best iPod year (which was 2007, before the iPhone started killing the iPod)
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Because they don't have a cheaper speaker. It's going to be difficult to catch up with Amazon and Google now. Especially as they were giving them away. How to compete with that? It would be interesting to know the profit for each one.
It depends on what you mean by "compete". If you count units, no. If you count revenue, Apple is doing reasonably well. I guess 15% to 20% market share.
 

Delgibbons

macrumors 6502a
Dec 14, 2016
694
1,467
London



Apple shipped an estimated 2.6 million HomePods during the fourth quarter of 2019, earning it 4.7 percent of the smart speaker market, according to new estimates shared today by Strategy Analytics.

Apple was the number six worldwide smart speaker market vendor, shipping fewer speakers than Amazon, Google, Baidu, Alibaba, and Xiaomi.


Amazon was the number one smart speaker vendor in the world during Q4 2019, shipping an estimated 15.8 million speakers for 28.3 percent market share. Google came in second with 13.9 million speakers shipped and 24.9 percent market share, followed by Chinese brands Baidu, Alibaba, and Xiaomi.

Apple shipped one million more HomePods in Q4 2019 than it did in Q4 2018 when it shipped 1.6 million, marking a 65 percent increase in growth. That didn't translate to a major increase in market share though as Apple ships so many fewer speakers than other brands.

The overall smart speaker market was up 44.7 percent with 55.7 million total shipments, up from the 38.5 million shipped in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Strategy Analytics says that it expects 2020 to be another record year for smart speaker sales despite the disruption to supply and demand caused by the coronavirus.

There's no word on whether Apple will be able to increase speaker shipments in 2020, as Strategy Analytics says consumers are drawn to low prices.Apple's HomePod is priced at $299 in the United States and is available in a limited number of countries. Apple is rumored to be working on a lower-cost version of the HomePod that will be released at some point in 2020, so that could potentially boost sales depending on whether its price point can match some of the much cheaper speakers offered by other vendors.

Another smart speaker sales report recently suggested that Amazon will hold on to its position as the number one smart speaker vendor through at least 2021.

Article Link: Apple's HomePod Places Sixth in Global Smart Speaker Market in Q4 2019
Wow. Fewer than Xiaomi. A new low.
 

gnipgnop

macrumors 65816
Feb 18, 2009
1,353
1,575
It doesn't really matter how many speakers Amazon is selling if customers don't use them to increase their shopping with Amazon. That's the only reason Amazon created them and there's little proof it's worked.
 

Jury

macrumors newbie
Jan 13, 2020
11
3
The HomePod is getting a new price at $200 and market share will increase to 9% by next year.
 

StevieD100

macrumors 6502a
Jan 18, 2014
585
835
Living Dangerously in Retirement
Why?! Amazon Echo works when you talk to it. Siri does not.
Your Echo is always listening and .... you can guess the rest.
Amazon and Google devices are nothing more than your resident spy.
If I visit someone (as part of my charity work) and they have one of them, I refuse to do anything until they are switched off and the power disconnected. I don't want the conversations I have with clients to be recorded by anyone let alone the likes of Google and Amazon.
I have had several people refuse my requests.
 

bbednarz

macrumors 65816
Nov 16, 2017
1,289
3,222
Chicago
I have a HomePod

“hey Siri. Play new music by Halsey”

“waiting. Just a moment. Can not complete your request”

“hey Siri play some music”

“just amoment. Sorry”

really. It’s just pitiful sometimes. I was cooking and wanted to set a timer and it still wouldn’t until way later. Even reset the damn thing. Also try using it as a sound bar and it’s out of sync a lot of the time. This is not a super polished Apple product.
All of these smart home assistants screw up from time to time. What you describe is not the common experience of HomePod users. The HomePod definitely picks up what you're saying better than the others.
 

TriBruin

macrumors regular
Jul 28, 2008
142
309
It doesn't really matter how many speakers Amazon is selling if customers don't use them to increase their shopping with Amazon. That's the only reason Amazon created them and there's little proof it's worked.
Are you somehow privy to Amazon's internal data? How do you know there is "little proof it worked?" I suspect Amazon is an much better position than you are to make that decision.