The launch of the HomePod put apple into the running with Google and Amazon for smart home automation. But the sales have been lackluster compared to the Echo and Google Home. In a survey by researchers with Loup Ventures, Amazon leads the smart speaker space 55% market share, and Google Home comes in second with 23% market share.
But, Apple has a chance to improve its model, says writer Christina Bonnington in this Slate article. Of the device's problems, she writes:
As early reviews suggested, there are several reasons why consumers might prefer Amazon or Google smart speakers—or no speaker at all. Siri’s limited functionality as a virtual assistant is one large turn-off. Thanks to Amazon’s vast library of third-party Alexa skills, its digital assistant can be used to check your calendar for the day, order a pizza or an Uber, and place orders for household items through Amazon. Both devices can work in conjunction with other smart home products, but Siri’s options are more limited. The HomePod is also heavily reliant on iPhone integration for full functionality, while Google and Amazon’s speakers largely stand on their own. However, given music is the central focus of Apple’s smart speaker, it would seem that Apple’s walled garden approach to music streaming may be the thing most deeply in need of reconsideration.Read More