After two years of tussling in courts, with both sides registering a mix of wins and losses on various matters, you’d think some kind of settlement would be in order. But last week, Google intensified its patent war with Sonos by opening up yet another front with two new lawsuits on voice control and other technologies, leading me to believe that any type of settlement is yet down the road.
End of the Smart Speaker Era?
Amazon is widely credited with having created the entire smart speaker category with their Alexa voice-controlled Echo smart speaker and other products. The company has sold millions of them since their introduction in 2015, especially at often insane sale prices during the holiday selling season. But Bloomberg Businessweek has come into possession of leaked internal Amazon documents that paint a portrait of a category that appears to be in serious trouble, principally because it fails – often miserably – to retain consumer interest.
And, the documents show, not only do consumers lose their interest…they lose it quickly.
See more on smart speaker problems identified in Amazon internal docs[Read more…] about Leaked Internal Amazon Docs Show Users Quickly Tire of Smart Speakers
But Did Google Ultimately Outsmart Them?
I don’t think it’s possible for me to overstate the significance of what just happened last week when, in a final decision from the U.S. International Trade Commission, the full panel affirmed a commission judge’s ruling that Google had in fact infringed on five patents held by Sonos. It is a real-life version of the bible story of David versus Goliath. Make no mistake, this David’s win may change our industry in fundamental ways.
A Tech David takes down a Tech Goliath[Read more…] about Goliath Has Fallen; Sonos Prevails Over Google in ITC Patent Action
Two new research reports from two different research groups came to basically the same conclusion – smart speakers (and IoT devices) show no signs of slowing down with eye-popping growth rates in just the last two years. One of the researchers, Comscore, is calling the trend, “The Smart Speaker Frenzy.”
See the latest smart speaker & IoT data…[Read more…] about Growth of Smart Speakers & IoT a ‘Frenzy,’ Says New Reports
The latest data from market research firm Strategy Analytics shows that Amazon is still the king of the smart speaker market – selling more smart speakers than anyone else. But the data also showed something else rather surprising – Google has substantially closed the gap between it and Amazon, coming within about 5.5% of Amazon’s market share numbers in the all-important fourth quarter selling season.
See how the smart speaker horse race is getting so much closer…[Read more…] about Google Closes in on Amazon in Smart Speaker Market Share
In a new analysis by eMarketer, we learn that Google has made significant inroads into the smart speaker market, causing Amazon’s Echo to begin to lose market share. So far, they remain the number one smart speaker, but projections show continued erosion, as consumers are embracing Google’s, as well as other’s, smart speaker options on the market.
See more on this early but meaningful research on Amazon’s declining share… [Read more…] about Amazon Echo Market Share is Slipping
Majority Say They Use Smart Speaker to Shop
New research conducted by NPR and Edison Research has revealed what is likely the key motivation for Amazon and Google to aggressively attack the mass market by offering attractive smart speaker products at ever-decreasing prices – they are a Trojan horse. The data also shows the remarkably rapid adoption of the technology in just a couple of short years.
See more on this important research on smart speakers… [Read more…] about New Research: Are Smart Speakers a Trojan Horse?
After many months of rumors and promises, Sonos announced today the new Sonos One, their first wireless speaker with voice-control capabilities built-in – in other words, its first smart speaker. And we have to say, Sonos was pretty smart about how they approached the smart speaker market.