This Company Just Passed Google As No. 2 in Smart Speakers

August 26, 2019, 8:41 PM UTC

Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Home have been the biggest players in the smart speaker market. But a new company is rising in the ranks.

Chinese tech giant Baidu has unseated Google for No. 2 in the smart speaker market worldwide, according to research firm Canalys. Baidu, which makes speakers that it sells only in China, had a 17.3% market share of shipments in the second quarter, ahead of Google, which had a 16.7% share.

Amazon led the smart speaker rankings at 25.4%.

Baidu’s rise is all the more remarkable because it has come out of nowhere. At this time last year, its market share was just under 1%, according to Canalys.

But since then, Baidu has managed to increase sales 3,700%. And no, that’s not a typo.

Baidu’s growth far outpaces that of Amazon Echo, shipments of which grew just over 61% in the past year. Google’s shipments actually declined nearly 20%.

Overall, smart speaker shipments grew 55% in the second quarter compared with the same quarter a year earlier. Manufacturers shipped over 26 million of them during that time versus 16.8 million in the year-ago quarter.

Much of that growth is coming from outside the U.S., which also works in Baidu’s favor. Shipments in the U.S. declined 2% even as the industry sees a larger growth period.

“Amazon and Google are focused on growing their business outside the U.S.,” senior analyst at Canalys Jason Low said in a statement.

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