Amazon Echo led Indian smart speaker market in 2018, followed by Google Home

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The smart speaker market in India was led by Amazon Echo with a 59 percent share in 2018, with Google Home following right on the heel with 39 percent share, according to a new report from International Data Corporation. IDC’s “India Monthly Smart Speaker Device Tracker” states that a total of 753,000 smart speakers were shipped in 2018 in the country. Google Home Mini emerged as the top seller by outselling all the other smart speakers in India.

However, Echo Dot with its second and third generation models turned out to be the most dominant, with four out of ten devices being sold in the country, said the report.

“Though the smart speaker is a relatively young product in India, the integration of voice assistants such as Alexa and Google Assistant in smart devices is gaining immense popularity in the country,” said Jaipal Singh, Associate Research Manager, Client Devices, IDC India.

Enterprises saw a surge in their purchase of smart speakers during the festival period, primarily for gifting purposes, while the actual enterprise adoption for smart speakers remained embryonic. Majority of smart speaker sales in the country can be attributed to the consumer segment. Online e-commerce websites and vendor’s own websites remain the primary channel through which 55 percent of the smart speakers were sold.

“The main driver of the early adoption so far is the novelty factor around this technology. However, it is certainly driving the shift in consumer behavior and accelerating the adoption of voice interfaces in India,” added Singh.

Jaipal further noted, “With the increasing acceptance of smart devices among consumers in India, Google and Amazon are identifying new ways of building an ecosystem for smart speakers to provide an enhanced consumer experience and building trust for secured use of these devices at home. This is catching the attention of traditional speaker companies as they are also planning to implement voice assistants in their devices in the next few months.”

Navkendar Singh, Research Director, IDC India added, “Conversational computing is currently being driven by voice assistants which are becoming more pervasive and are being embraced in a positive way in India. Many Indians are using voice assistants for the first time in their smartphones – some even using them in their feature phones – now with more localized and enhanced use cases, they want to use voice interfaces in more and more devices.”

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