A new study by Canalys reports that worldwide smart speaker shipments grew 137% year over year in Q3 to nearly 20 million units.
Of those, Canalys estimates Amazon shipped 6.3 million Echo units in Q3, reclaiming the top spot after two quarters of ranking second to Google. Canalys estimates Google shipped 5.9 million units in Q3.
In terms of global market share, Canalys estimates Amazon had 31.9%, Google 29.8%, Alibaba 11.1%, and Ziomi 9.7% for the quarter.
New estimates published yesterday peg Amazon Echo smart speaker shipments at 30% of the overall global market in Q2 2018. Strategy Analytics proffers that the Echo Dot represented 18% of overall shipments, with the Echo representing 12%.
Meanwhile, estimates peg Google devices as taking 27% of the market, with Google Home Mini representing 20% (larger than the Echo Dot) and Google Home taking 7%. They pegged Alibaba’s Tmall Genie at another 7%, with the rest of the market taking 36%.
This is a race for the future of controlling home automation systems. We view the deployment of smart speakers into homes and cars as highly strategic for both Amazon and Google. Smart speaker shipment volume is as much about distribution channels as it is services. Amazon and Google are both investing extremely heavily in the AI and ML to power more sophisticated services that these devices are a primary interface to.