Amazon rules the roost for voice-controlled speakers for now

Google Home is fast catching up.

As per research firm eMarketer, Amazon’s voice-controlled speakers are dominating the nascent market of voice-controlled speakers.

As per the results of its study, Amazon Echo and Echo Dot devices have grabbed 70.6% of the U.S. market in 2017. These speakers feature Amazon’s Alexa, its voice-controlled assistant which allows consumers to control the speaker by ordering it to play music, turn on the lights in the house or order a taxi.

Alphabet’s Google Home, with a market share of 23.8%, is a distant second.

As per eMarketer’s forecast, the number of active U.S. users is set to more than double in numbers this year to 35.6 million.

This development comes with Amazon positioning Alexa and its speech-recognition technology as a central part of customers’ lifestyle. For Amazon, these figures are music to its ears: more users means Alexa will have access to more data which will improve its understanding and place it as the top platform for voice-controlled assistants, much like Microsoft’s windows is to desktop computers.

Amazon, which incidentally does not separately disclose Echo speaker sales, stated it was having trouble in keeping the product in stock.

In a note to clients, RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Mahaney disclosed that extra revenues from such devices could help Amazon generate $10 billion in the next 3 years. This does not include potential revenue from licensing Alexa to other companies.

However Amazon will face a stiff competition from Alphabet’s Google. According to analysts, the technology underpinning Google Home is much superior to its competitors.

Despite being in the market for fewer months, in comparison to Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home’s brand awareness in the U.S. already equalled 80% of Alexa’s.


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