Time and again, Apple has shown that they just don't really care about market share metrics. Apple cares about making money, and it is very good at it. It's self-evident that an expensive device that works only with iPhones isn't going to command the market device of a $50 device that works across many different services. What is the ASP of those other devices? How much revenue is Amazon / Google making per user?
> Apple had an opportunity to put the HomePod at the center of a new ecosystem of smart home and other gadgets that aren’t glued to the iPhone. But the small, wireless speaker is not that product. Though the HomePod delivers market-leading audio quality, consumers have discovered it’s heavily dependent on the iPhone and is limited as a digital assistant.
Apple clearly hasn't chosen that strategy, otherwise, by definition, the device wouldn't be limited to iPhone and Apple Music. Amazon and Google's strategies make sense because Amazon is invested in getting you buying more stuff, and Google wants your data to train its model.
Apple doesn't actually have that much other stuff to hook you into - it has HomeKit-enabled devices, but it is the other manufacturers that make money from those, not Apple.
And how many people actually have a Nest anyway? If a HomePod becomes a thin client for expensive HomeKit gear, it becomes less, not more useful. It's a profitable smart speaker product for audiophiles, and it doesn't _try_ to be anything else.
If you worked at a company and released a product that took 10% of the market within 10 weeks of launching you would be celebrating.
The question is why did Apple release a product that was clearly not ready?
KGI: Apple could sell just 2 million HomePods across all of 2018, company 'mulls' low-cost model
Although what really surprised me in this article is that Google Home only has 14% of the market share while Amazon Echo has 73%. I had assumed that their market shares were much closer, but according to the article Echo is out selling Google Home more than 5 to 1!
There's quite a lot of revisionism (completely understandable) that takes place about the original iPhone, but the iPhone only really got going with the second gen.
The iPhone is probably _the_ case study for not writing off Apple in the first gen of its product. Writing in 2006, many of the predictions why the iPhone would fail seemed perfectly reasonable (high cost, carrier subsidies, impossibility of simplifying the phone interface ), and it's only in retrospect that they seem ludicrous.
I had a Palm 650 (which I loved) before that, the iPhone did almost everything better and cost less per month including data - and with iPhoneOS 2.0 had an immense upgrade.
It's revisionism to not see how impressive even the OG iPhone was.
It's hard to overstate just how flawed the original iPhone was. You were locked into AT&T, you had to effectively buy the phone outright AND pay the subsidy (which never went away, no matter how long you owned the phone). The radio in the phone was obsolete before it was even announced (no 3G support at all). There were zero apps nor any mechanism to add apps to the phone, Jobs tried to sell the "just use webapps!" but the phone was really not powerful enough nor were web technologies well baked enough to make that a reality. The battery life was less than amazing and the entire phone was somewhat slow.
However, at the same time the iPhone completely disrupted the phone OS market. It focused heavily on the web browser just as the technology was finally there to put a mostly full featured web browser in a phone. Turns out that going to a webpage and having it render mostly correct was more important than shitty castrated apps hamstrung by artificial limitations on Symbian phones. The built-in apps covered most of the bases too, so the lack of apps wasn't a disaster. Mostly however it was the interface. People were sick and tired of godawful phone UIs and nobody else in the market was the least bit interested in improving it. The world revolutionary gets tossed around a lot in tech circles, but the iPhone UI was truly revolutionary. It was a bloody coup that left Symbian buried in a shallow grave out back and flat glass bricks sitting on the throne.
Apple's strategic advantage is that they have the cash and corporate willpower to iterate the design until it meets the market need.
Without even digging I can name the LG Prada UI as one other contemporaneous effort. The KE850 was actually announced before the iPhone.
Amazon and Google are going to sell hundreds of millions of their devices, which will allow them to improve their AI globally.
Personally, I think the Dot is smarter than Siri. I still try to throw a few questions to my iPhone and Apple Watch, but like Apple Maps, it’s a less than satisfying experience.
I need to get my girlfriend the Echo so I can stop the “Hey Siri, ...Hey Siri, ...Hey Siri” moments.
So Apple also will sell hundreds of millions of devices and allow them to improve their AI globally.
Turns out the answer was no. Worse, you can't even get a list of everything Siri knows how to do, so you have to guess and hope she doesn't just stick the query into Google again. So she's only useful for demos and for the two or three things you remember she can do. Apple never even gave us a way to define our own macros. There should have been a whole section on the app store for Siri macros you could install for various interests. She can't even launch apps! It's so ridiculous.
A year ago, I would fight with her constantly in my car on my way to work. "Hey Siri, play playlist iPhone 3" .. "Sorry, I can't find playlist iPhone Free" .. That type of thing doesn't happen anymore, for me, at least.
Can't speak to her overall capability to do other things, but in the car this morning I asked her to "Play Spotify" and she had no idea what I was saying - or at least pretended to not have any idea!
I own all of those devices. I talk to my Alexa more than all those devices combined.
So before Quaterly results sales figures are pure speculation from analysts (and to be even worse Apple often don’t even reveal précises sales figures for new segments, melting number in the "others" category).
On the other hand competing manufacturer don’t do a lot of direct sales and communicate sales to resellers (so a sales don’t mean the product was actually bought and used by a real customer). Meanwhile Tim Cook was the architect of a zero stock policy so for Apple sale figures, every unit produced are put into a real customer hands.
So at the end of the day it’s usually only after one or two year after Apple entered a new market that you can really mesure success. In case of success Apple can’t hide benefits of the new line in the "other" category and you start to have real metrics. And if competitors stay on resellers inventory you start to see big discounts while their financials results decline.
In case of Apple faillure (like "fatboy" iPod or the "tin can" MacPro) Apple let the product slowly die and ultimately revamp it’s product line. Meanwhile competitor financial trajectory is unnafected.
That was the case the original iPhone as well, I would say the iPhone really took-off on it's second version.
Bought an Android soon after and so far, I have stayed. But that might change, because of the different privacy policies of the two companies.
Used it jailbroken into 2011, when I finally replaced it with an iPhone 4, which in its turn ran jailbroken until 2014. That was when I got an iPhone 6, which I'm still on and I haven't jailbroken it, because Apple more or less caught up in stock iOS with the more important jailbreak hacks around that time. It seems like iPhone 6 will be phone I'll use for the longest time, because it's still fast enough and works fine.
There's only a couple of things I still miss from the jailbreak days. One was a hack for iTunes that downloaded and displayed the lyrics for whatever song you were playing. The other was a SOCKS proxy that let me tether my phone without incurring the ridiculous tethering surcharge.
These are sales figures for the first two months where Homepod was available, not overall market share.
They were numerous such reports about the iPhone X -- after it was made available and until Apple published their quarterly results, and it became evident that all those reports and analysts speaking of bad sales were all bogus.
HomePod might or might not have sold well. But not because some BS report says so.
The fact is that we just don't know what Apple's internal targets are. Nor do I think lacklustre sales are all that worrisome anyway given that the HomePod quite firmly locks users into the Apple ecosystem e.g. only works with HomeKit and Apple Music.
Is it a hot seller ? I don't know, but I don't see many smartwatches around me. The only one person I know who has one and wears it is the boss of a friend and they make iOS apps specifically.
But I don't have any numbers, and I can't find really any...
Competition in this space with both volume and profit margin is what? Rolex?
Apple is basically a corporate behemoth that moved in next to the Mom & Pop boutiques.
Total profit earned is basically a measure of brand loyalty and the ability of Apple to mark up their products.
Is smartwatch a hardware segment that will last is yet another question.
It is just as likely to be a repeat of the smartphone market where we saw that Apple's ability to take all of the margins from an industry caused competitors to exit.
They have been continuously selling more each year, and have multi-billion share of Apple's sales now. Apple speaks of "50 percent unit growth for 4th quarter in a row".
(And of course eclipse in sales any other smart watch -- more than 10x times more).
"Apple Watch Sales Soar To 8 Million In Last Quarter, Apple Owned 2017 Wearables Market"
Report: 2017 brings huge Apple Watch growth, 18 million units, up 54% YoY
Also, anecdata: I see a relatively large amount of people in the London tube with AWs. For a supposedly failed product they represent quite a sample.
I mean sure, Apple Music is great, but I'm doing just fine without it. But I would consider it if the price was lower. Yes the price could be considered low by some people when you look at the value, but I have to look at all my different subscriptions, and it sticks out as higher than the others.
For one, the curated playlists and radio stations are garbage. It seems like Apple has some deals with a few artists or labels and shoves them down your throat. Their recommendation engine is terrible too, it's just another way for them to promote these artists.
The front page of Apple music is often filled with hip hop and pop artist garbage as well. I don't listen to this, I hate seeing trashy looking hip hop artists and empty-faced pop divas every time I open the app. In Canada, they have an entire section dedicated to Francophone music. This isn't Apple's fault, our government requires it, but it's just wasted space for me, I don't listen to french music, give me an option to hide this crap.
It does one thing well, and that's it: "I have a song stuck in my head and want to listen to it now". Even then, I find myself going to YouTube more often than not.
Personally I use Plex.
But it isn't designed to be a replacement for a 5.2, 7.1.4 etc system. But a pair of them with an AppleTV could absolutely be your 2.1 system for watching Netflix and listening to Apple Music.
Something as simple as “Hey Siri turn the living room lights off” is often turned into a full discussion because it misheard “turn” and is too stupid to infer it from the rest of the sentence.
The real time translation for the 5 or so supported languages is pretty incredible. I use it when I can’t think of the correct French to use if I have a worker visit my house (like an electrician, etc.)
Google is under appreciated — imo its way more capable.
HomePod Siri is dumber, which 10x the irritation.
I would say Siri has been the worst of the three. Even an Apple centrist website shows how they are falling short.
Apple knows it can't compete with them yet, which is why it focused as a Sonos competitor at launch until presumably iOS 12 when Siri will see a sizable update to better compete as well as offering more basic offerings such as multiple user recognition, stereo paring, brevity mode, intercom mode, Home App automation integration and such.
It will be a great product and think the price and being limited to Apple Music for now isn't a major problem but the Siri limitations and other items noted above are even for people in the Apple eco system. Once those are fixed and most heavy Apple users have one, then they will eventually lower the price, open up to third party apps, and the masses will come.
Let's just hope they update throughout the year often rather than waiting for long stretches like the other product lines.
Given the earlier ”grabbed about a third of the U.S. smart speaker market in unit sales”, let’s assume this is in units, too. Guessing at average sale prices of $100 for Amazon, $129 for Google, $350 for Apple and $150 for ‘others’, that would give them about 25% of the market (1) in dollars. _If_ that’s ballpark correct and _if_ they manage to keep that up, I wouldn’t call it a failure, certainly not considering that, in their other products, their margins are higher than those of their competitors.
(1) if that’s their market. That’s arguable. Some people think they compete with audio systems more than with smart speakers (¿for now?)
All that said, Apple is foregoing a big opportunity by not making a cheaper equivalent of the HomePod like Echo Dot or Google Home Mini. Those devices sound terrible, but consumers are happy enough with them given the price point.
It's nothing special in that role, but actually better than I would expect, and music isn't the main use (controlling content being cast to the TV is a lot bigger use than listening to music from the speaker.)
I guess I can understand getting one of the premium (Home Max, HomePod, etc.) smart speakers if direct music playback on the speaker is your main use case, though even people for whom that is the main use case often seem happy with the mid-range units like the regular Echo and Google Home.
What do I know though, I have 3' tall cerwin vegas in my living room and can't comprehend why someone would want something smaller
Google sold over 6 million Home speakers since mid-October - The ...