Will we be getting rid of keyboards altogether someday? Not entirely. Surely, it is possible that we will spend less time on them when we can do pretty much everything by voice. If you are interested in finding out what is going on in the market today and where it will likely end up in the future, you have come to the right place. We have compiled voice search statistics and facts for you to get a good picture of the market.
Since the boom of smart speakers, voice search usage has increased dramatically. These standalone speakers are designed to interface both first-party and third-party applications and content through a cloud-based voice assistant. In 2015, there were only 1.7 million voice-first devices shipped in the US. A year later, that number blew up to 6.5 million. The following year, consumers were introduced to Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple Homepod in a big way. This has fueled the current rise in voice search usage. In this section, we will review some statistics from the past two years.
Source: CanalysDesigned by
The market in East Asia, especially China, is very fertile. China is rising and is already a major global player. Furthermore, the top three largest companies worldwide are located there. Also, experts expect global smart speaker growth to continue rising dramatically in the future. Furthermore, we can expect more adoption from countries like Japan and Singapore in the coming years.
Sure, the global market is being taken over by Chinese brands such as Alibaba, Baidu, and Xiaomi. However, US brands still have a strong foothold domestically. It is not that surprising as US companies like Google were early innovators in voice-assisted technology. In May of 2017, Google’s voice search reached a very high 95% accuracy. In this section, we will look at the shape of the US smart speaker market in the past two years.
Voice-first devices are getting off the shelves much quicker this year. Amazon has since claimed the top spot among providers. Amazon Alexa and Amazon Echo statistics show that there might be even more room to grow. Lastly, experts predict a surge in general smart speaker sales and thus more voice search usage. But what do Americans really use voice search for? Check out the voice search report in the next section.
The uses for hands-free voice-first devices seem to be endless. You can control other devices with it like your smart home. People also use voice assistants to compose and send messages and emails. In this section, we compiled relevant facts and statistics from various voice search research sources to give you an idea about end-consumer behavior.
use voice assistants to control other devices every month%
use voice search to check news and weather daily%
use voice search to play music daily%
use voice search daily for something they’d normally type into the search engine%
use voice assistants to send texts or emails daily%
use voice to ask for quick questions daily%
use voice to check traffic or for navigation daily,%
use voice assistants to control other devices daily%
Source: PWCDesigned by
US consumers use voice search mainly as a substitute to manually typing everything. This allows for hands-free interaction and further multitasking. However, a big buzz surrounding voice tech is its use for voice commerce. In the next section, we compiled voice search facts related to eCommerce in the United States.
Amazon alone sold 4.6 million smart speaker units taking 22.1% of the market share in the first quarter of 2019. They almost doubled their shipments in 2018 at 2.5 million in the same quarter. Also, Amazon even had a strong showing in the second quarter with 6.6 million shipments worldwide increasing their global share to 25.4%. With more devices rolling out with native Alexa already built-in, Amazon-powered voice commerce is poised to surge in the near future. Furthermore, Walmart has partnered with Google to have a voice-based grocery shopping offering. From the shape of things now, voice commerce is soon to gain more traction. Let’s take a look at some voice search data for eCommerce.
eCommerce has witnessed a boom especially in 2016 where 51% of online shoppers purchased using their smartphones. With the influx of millennials and Gen Zers in the economy, these digital natives may push voice commerce to new heights. Forecasters are bullish about eCommerce growth pegging it to reach 3.56 trillion in sales in 2021. These eCommerce statistics point to a bright future. Right now, it seems that voice commerce will be a big part of it.
Today, the global voice search market share is being disrupted by China. Alibaba’s voice assistant is reportedly better than Google’s. Its advanced features can detect implicit intent like asking for another delivery address when a customer will not be home during delivery hours. Furthermore, competitor Baidu is claiming that its voice assistant is already in 200 million devices worldwide. The global voice search market size will continue to grow because of these new entrants. So, what do experts think will happen in the future?
6.6 million (Amazon)
4.5 million (Baidu)
4.3 million (Google)
4.1 million (Alibaba)
2.8 million (Xiaomi)
3.7 million (others)
Source: CanalysDesigned by
Amazon still holds the biggest pie in global market shares for smart speakers at 25.4%. Also, Baidu has overtaken Google for second place at 17.3%. Advancements in attitudes towards artificial intelligence will also play a part in the future shape of the global smart speaker market. Furthermore, with China’s domestic market being fertile, it will not be surprising if, in the coming years, the top three smart speaker brands will all be Chinese.
The global smart speaker market is being disrupted by relatively new Chinese entrants. Insiders even claim that their voice assistants are even better than Google’s although primarily deployed in Chinese. However, the domestic market in the US seems to be safe from these new entrants given a wide cultural gap.
Amazon looks to keep its top position in the near future. This is especially so as its voice search services and products interface well with its core business. It is a prime mover in voice commerce with Alexa and Amazon Echo. Google is looking to keep its second place in the domestic market. Also, Google made a deal with Walmart for voice-assisted eCommerce. This could take up some eCommerce market shares from Amazon but, in the state of things, Amazon has not much to worry about.
Moreover, these big moves in the industry worldwide will have a bunch of repercussions. SEO will be affected if indeed a strong surge in voice search usage will come about. Industries will have to recalibrate and redesign their company touchpoints to fit the needs. Also, there will likely be a strong demand for better AI. Furthermore, the demand for better eCommerce platforms that can handle voice search will likely increase. Therefore, businesses have to watch out for such events. It may be better to ride the wave a little early on than to fall behind its curve.
And no, we still wouldn’t be doing away with our keyboards and screens any time soon. However, we may use them a little less.
FinancesOnline is available for free for all business professionals interested in an efficient way to find top-notch SaaS solutions. We are able to keep our service free of charge thanks to cooperation with some of the vendors, who are willing to pay us for traffic and sales opportunities provided by our website. Please note, that FinancesOnline lists all vendors, we’re not limited only to the ones that pay us, and all software providers have an equal opportunity to get featured in our rankings and comparisons, win awards, gather user reviews, all in our effort to give you reliable advice that will enable you to make well-informed purchase decisions.