The total shipments of smart speakers for the year 2021 crossed 1 million mark for the first time in India. In terms of value, smart speakers worth Rs 463.4 crore ($63.6 million) were shipped.
According to a report from techARC, a market research and analysis company, most of the opportunity for smart speakers companies lies in under Rs 5,000. “Consumers are preferring to buy smart speakers priced under Rs 5,000 where Amazon Echo Dot devices are priced,” the report said.
The category will post ‘ultra-growth’ — annual growth of more than 35% — for next 2-3 years as more players foray into the segment.
Amazon smart speakers had a near monopoly of the market with 79% share. But it seems to have come down from the previous quarter where it had nearly 90% share.
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Amazon tops, but Xiaomi making inroads
The report said Amazon’s market position will continue to remain strong. “Other than catering to multiple market segments through widest range of smart speakers to offer, it is also investing in building a content and use case ecosystem by helping development of skills. In India alone, Amazon has more than 30,000 skills to offer to users.”
But competition is also making inroads. Xiaomi appears to be catching up fast. In its 1st year in this category, Xiaomi has shipped more than 75,000 units and garnered 8% of market share by volume. In terms of value, its market share stood at 10%.
Apple also made a good start in this category in 2020. Its Homepod and Homepod Mini smart speakers started selling in India from October 2020. Within just one quarter of shipments, its share was 2% in the overall units. Over 84% of Apple smart speaker shipments were of Homepod Mini model.
Google has to revisit its strategy about smart speakers like other hardware products including Pixel smartphones. Though it managed 11% market share by volume in 2020, it could face serious competition from other existing and new entrant players.
Among the best-selling top 5 smart speakers, Amazon Echo devices featured at No. 1, 2 and 5 ranks. Google managed position 3rd, while Xiaomi’s smart speaker also featured in the top 5 sellers for 2020.