Yet another report shows smart speakers dominating the US consumer tech market

Yet another report shows smart speakers dominating the US consumer tech market
If you needed further proof that smart speakers are eclipsing essentially every other category of consumer tech products in terms of their growth pace, a new Consumer Technology Association (CTA) study claims you can find these trendy devices in almost one third of all US homes nowadays. The 31 percent figure is up from only 8 percent adoption back in 2016, marking the second consecutive yearly surge of nearly 100 percent in household ownership.

While it seems unlikely the market will double again next year, the number of US homes with at least one smart speaker in them is expected to continue escalating, based on strong intent to buy among existing owners and potential first-time users. That shouldn't come as a surprise thinking back to a recent Canalys report forecasting the expansion of the worldwide smart speaker installed base above both tablet and wearable band numbers.

Speaking of wearable devices, we're also not particularly surprised to hear adoption of both smartwatches and activity trackers has risen by a healthy five and four percentage points respectively in the past year to reach 23 and 29 percent of US households. That means there are still more fitness bands in use stateside, but higher-end smartwatches are slowly closing the gap.

Meanwhile, wireless headphones are naturally outpacing the growth of their wired counterparts, looking destined to take the overall usage lead in the personal audio market before long. Last but certainly not least, smartphones may not be selling as well as they used to, but they're still getting incredibly close to ubiquity, with 91 percent US home adoption and 38 percent intent to purchase among repeat and first-time purchases for the next year. Perhaps that signals an impending improvement in US smartphone demand, although there are obviously no guarantees.

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2 Comments

1. JCASS889

Posts: 471; Member since: May 18, 2018

Must be fun being spied on.

2. Skizzo

Posts: 403; Member since: Jul 14, 2013

Not surprised by this trend at all. Smart speakers are wonderfully useful, and I honestly never realized how much my small daily routines would change once I got my first Google Home Mini. It's not just me either, as all friends that have seen it in use have since gotten one of their own. Just a quick note to anyone with the "spy" argument: Is your search/use data being collected? Yes. Is it any different than the data already being collected from you for simply owning/using a smartphone today? No, not really. If you own a smartphone, then Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and dozens of other companies/apps have an infinite amount of data being collected from you on a daily basis. Like it or not, this is the market we live in, and corporations are using our data to create more detailed user profiles on all of us, so that they can be better at selling to us. Is the convenience of having Google Assistant on a smart speaker worth the data they collect from your use? In my opinion, undoubtedly yes. I don't blame people for not wanting to "be listened to" or contributing to the data collection, but the reality is that it's no different than the phone you already own, or the "watching" data that the cable companies have collected for literally decades to gain intel on what programs we like/dislike, and in the end, it's not for any other reason other than wanting to understand their user base better, so they can provide services that better suit our needs and make it so that they get more of our dollars in return.

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