Smart Speaker Ownership Continues to Climb

March 12, 2019

Previous research from Adobe in September 2018 suggested that smart speaker ownership by US adults could reach almost 50% over the 2018 holiday season, but the latest survey from the technology vendor shows that may have been a little optimistic.

While this device category hasn’t quite ballooned as predicted, the latest results from a February 2019 survey show 36% adoption among US adults, representing 14% growth (4% points) over just a 6-month period. And given their use for advertising, e-commerce and search, marketers should take note of the healthy engagement figures.

Three-quarters of respondents to this latest survey who owned a Smart Speaker report using it daily, up from 71% in August 2018. Possible reasons for this increase in daily use could be because more consumers are getting comfortable with functions such as voice ordering.

Male consumers (43%) are more likely to own Smart Speakers than female consumers (29%), per the report. Nearly half (47%) of individuals ages 35-54 years own smart speakers, followed in adoption rate by 18-24 years old (40%) and those ages 55-64 years old (37%). Only one-quarter of respondents ages 65 years and older own a Smart Speaker.

TV Tops Devices with Voice Functionality

Interestingly, more than 4 in 10 (42%) of consumers say they would like see voice functionality in televisions, making these devices the most desired for voice interface among the various identified. When purchasing a TV, nearly one-third (32%) said that having voice controls was an important factor in their decision-making process.

These numbers could be indicative of a change in consumer attitudes in using voice assistance. Nearly two years ago, only 1 in 10 (9.4%) individuals with TVs sporting voice functionality used it to find something to watch. Even more telling, 4 in 10 (40.4%) said that while they did not have a TV with voice search, they had no interest using voice search to find something to watch.

Smart Speaker Ads Less Intrusive

Could these devices become an important vehicle for advertising? One in 4 consumers surveyed for the report said they had heard an ad on a Smart Speaker, with 38% of them saying they feel that voice ads are less intrusive than on any other media channel. Additionally, 4 in 10 of those who have experienced an ad on a Smart Speaker also feel that they are more engaging than ads on TV, print or online.

About the Data: The data for this report is compiled from a survey of 1,001 US adults 18 years and older about their use of voice assistants. All of the respondents for the survey were required to own a smartphone.

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