2018 Sales Figures: Smart Home Devices

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Home Devices - Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Facebook Portal

It is estimated that 16.5 million Amazon Echo devices and 18 million Google Home devices were sold in 2018 in the United States.

FINDINGS

  • In 2018, there were 16.5 million Amazon Echo devices sold in the United States.
  • In 2018, there were 18 million Google Home devices sold in the United States.
  • There were 6.6 million Amazon Echo users added in 2018 in the United States.
  • There were 7.2 million Google Home users added in 2018 in the United States.
  • Facebook Portal was launched in November 2018.


RESEARCH STRATEGY

In order to fulfill this request, we began by searching the annual reports of Amazon, Google, and Facebook for the number of smart speakers they had sold in 2018. Amazon mentions that they have sold over 100 million Echo devices since its launch. However, none of the companies have reported the number of smart speakers they sold in 2018 in the United States. Next, we looked through media and industry news sources such as The Verge, Tech Radar, Tech Crunch, Digital Trends, and Slash Gear. Slash Gear reported that Amazon has reached the 100 million device milestone (as published later in Amazon's annual report). On Verge, we found that Facebook Portal was only launched in November 2018; Digital Trends reported that the global smart speaker user base is 114 million.

In December 2018, Tech Crunch reported that Amazon's user penetration in the United States in 2018 was 66.6%, Google's was 29.5%, and other brands had an 8.3% share. As Tech Crunch had cited eMarketer data, we looked for the original eMarketer report but found that accessing it required eMarketer Pro subscription. While looking for other research reports on the US Smart Speaker market, we found Voicebot.ai's report. Voicebot.ai has reported the number of users added for Amazon Echo and Google Home, but it does not report the number of speakers sold. According to Voicebot, in 2018, Google Home, Amazon Echo, and other brands added 7.2 million, 6.6 million, and 5.4 million users, respectively, in the United States. Further, we found that the average number of speakers per user increased from 1.8 in 2018 to 2 in 2019. Overall, there were 66.4 million users and 133 million (66.4*2) smart speaker devices in the United States in January 2019, compared to 47.3 million users and 85 million devices at the end of 2017. Therefore, in 2018, a total of 48 million (133M- 85M) new devices were sold and 19.2 million (7.2M+6.6M+5.4M) users were added.

As Facebook Portal was only launched in November 2018 (it's 2018 sales are likely to have been insignificant) it is unlikely to have been covered by any research agencies. Also, based on the fact that it has largely received average or poor reviews, it is unlikely that the company would have done exceptionally good sales to have disclosed it. As we were unable to find the number of Amazon and Google smart speakers sold, we triangulated the estimates. Assuming that the proportion of new devices sold by each brand is the same as the proportion of new users added,

The number of Amazon Echo devices sold in the US in 2018= 6.6M*48M/ 19.2M = 16.5 million
The number of Google Home devices sold in the US in 2018= 7.2M*48M/ 19.2M = 18 million

Canlays estimates that there were 24.2 million Amazon Echo's and 23.4 million Google Homes shipped globally in 2018. In 2017, there were 22 million Amazon Echo devices and 11.2 million Google Home devices shipped. When we looked for sales data for smart speakers in years before 2018, we found that the same agencies had reported similar statistics. Besides, the growth in smart speaker sales has been substantial, which make the 2017 and 2018 figures significantly different.


Sources
Sources

Quotes
  • "Since that first-generation Echo, customers have purchased more than 100 million Alexa-enabled devices."