Despite Apple’s ability to turn phones into gold, its foray into the smart speaker market dominated by Amazon is facing much more of an uphill climb.
Apple’s Siri-controlled HomePod, recently announced and expected to begin selling in December, isn’t generating the excitement that often surrounds Apple product launches, according to a new study.
Apple isn’t alone launching new smart speaker products. Amazon recently added to its Echo family the Echo Look and the Echo Show, which has a screen, so consumers have more ways to interact with Alexa.
When compared to Amazon’s Echo Show, Apple’s HomePod doesn’t fare so well, based on the study by BI Intelligence, which comprised a survey of 2,000 consumers in its research panel.
Apple is expected to sell 5 million HomePod in the product’s first year on the market, compared to 9 million Echo Shows.
Interestingly, consumers were more aware of the HomePod (67%) than the Echo Show (52%). However, the HomePod generates less excitement, with only 5% saying they would get the speaker as soon as it is released.
The main reason consumers are shying away from the HomePod is the $349 price, compared to the Amazon Echo Show at $229, Amazon Echo at $180 and Google Home at $129. Here are the reasons consumers say they won’t buy an Apple HomePod, according to the BII study:
On the positive side for Apple, 25% of the likely HomePod buyers expected they would purchase one within a year. On the positive side for Amazon, 28% of Amazon Echo buyers expected to get one within a year, some of whom already preordered one.
There may be market leaders and laggards, but the digital voice-assistant market is booming.