No Echo here: Apple reportedly cut orders for its HomePod smart speaker last month

No Echo here: Apple reportedly cut orders for its HomePod smart speaker last month
Not every product Apple rolls out is a big winner. Whether it is the price or the fact that Apple came to the category late, the company's HomePod smart speaker is not selling like Apple thought it would. According to someone familiar with the matter, in late March Apple cut its forecast of HomePod sales for the year, and reduced its orders for the device from contract manufacturer Inventec. Keep in mind that this took place less than two months after Apple finally started shipping the device. Originally expected to launch in December, Apple pushed back the release to February of this year.

During the pre-order period, the HomePod garnered a third of the U.S. smart speaker market by units sold, according to Slice Intelligence. But after ten weeks on the market, the HomePod, priced at $349, had a 10% market share. That compared to category creator Amazon's 73% and Google Home's 14%. Three weeks after the launch, sales of the HomePod had dropped to just 4% of the U.S. smart speaker market. At Apple Stores throughout the country, the HomePod is collecting dust with some locations selling fewer than 10 units a day.


While the Apple HomePod is considered by many to have the best sound among smart speakers, many have found virtual assistant Siri unable to handle the large number of tasks that Amazon's Alexa and Google Assistant can handle. Gene Munster, co-founder of Loup Ventures, expects HomePod sales to gain momentum during the 2018 holiday shopping season. For all of this year, he sees 7 million units getting rung up this year, rising 57% to 11 million in 2019. Munster sees Amazon selling 29 million Echo smart speakers this year and 39 million next year. That would be a 34% increase. As for Google, the former Piper Jaffray analyst expects sales to soar 78% from 18 million this year, to 32 million in 2019.

source: Bloomberg

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14 Comments

1. CreeDiddy

Posts: 2255; Member since: Nov 04, 2011

This speaker functionality is disappointing. This is nothing more than half smart speaker that sounds slightly better than an Sonos. In my opinion, the Echo has a huge advantage while being to pair with a $150-$200 Bluetooth high fidelity speakers. No thanks Apple!

22. buccob

Posts: 2975; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

What were they expecting after chopping so much functionality out of a "bluetooth smart" speaker... No pairing with devices other than iPhones, no Aux-in, no voice features with services other than Apple Music... etc... a huge rip-off even by Apple standards.

23. sgodsell

Posts: 7456; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

The Google Homes can pair with Bluetooth speakers as well. What is kind of funny Apples Homepod costs $350 and doesn't even have stereo sound. You need two Homepods for stereo sound, which it still doesn't support. But putting all that aside, Apple themselves sell Beats stereo speakers for a fraction of the Homepod. So then you could buy an inexpensive Amazon echo or Google home and even connect to any Bluetooth stereo speakers or stereo system in general. If stupid people cannot see that for Apples future stereo using two homepods ($700) is now getting into the home stereo theater system pricing. Yet those systems will connect to your TV, and so many other devices can connect as well. Including an iPhone or any smartphone, tablet, or laptop. Plus you can use any streaming music or software you like, including YouTube, and more. Yet Apples homepod is still restricted to Apples iPhone with limited voice controls, and what can connect to it. To sum it up, the homepod is a bad investment.

2. Klinton

Posts: 1409; Member since: Oct 24, 2016

'While the Apple HomePod is considered by many to have the best sound among smart speakers' Whaaat??? Fake propaganda still counts? I guessed that after Zuckerberg grilling it would stop!!!! ROTFL

3. torr310

Posts: 1679; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

"But after ten weeks on the market, the HomePod, priced at $349, had a 10% market share. That compared to category creator Amazon's 73% and GoogleHome's 14%. " Hey, maybe it's not as expected as Apple would but it's very respectful market share considering how short time it has been on sale.

6. Man_Utd

Posts: 188; Member since: Feb 03, 2015

Overpriced POS! Hahaha Apple. There are only a few suckers (i.e. itsrelevant) that are willing to buy your crap.

13. Cat97

Posts: 1936; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Really, how exciting can a speaker be ? Even for Apple, selling a speaker is not easy. And there are so many choices. Speaker AI is for now just an useless, overblown gimmick.

14. midan

Posts: 3019; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

"And there are so many choices." This is exactly the reason why HomePod will sell well in long run. The more choices you have the harder it is to choose the right one. But with Apple name and brand when average joe is thinking to buy smartspeaker they see Apple have one and they already have good experience with Apple products so they buy HomePod. I think the biggest issue here is that how often you really upgrade your speakers and who see value with smartspeakers, but eventually people will buy smartspeakers when it's time to upgrade. Just like people are buying Apple watches more and more.

17. cmdacos

Posts: 4267; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

It will sell better when dual mono sound gets turned on...

19. Telemike

Posts: 43; Member since: Nov 30, 2012

Well, if Apple would ONLY have Bluetooth pairing so you could use ANY phone or device with it to stream music, the market for the Homepod would be much larger. But when you limit access you limit sales.

21. surethom

Posts: 1721; Member since: Mar 04, 2009

Drop the price by £100 & add spotify & then see sales increases other wise choose Sonos One if you are a sound buff.

25. Martin_Cooper

Posts: 1774; Member since: Jul 30, 2013

I don't think I would have ever said this about an apple product. But its a great hardware failed by terrible software.

28. gamehead unregistered

Make a better speaker next time

30. Sammy_DEVIL737

Posts: 1529; Member since: Nov 28, 2016

Or make your Virtually Assistant better.!!!

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