Apple’s smartspeaker sales reignited. Thanks to the cheaper HomePod Mini, In Q3 2021 Apple shipped 4 million units compared to 2.1 million in the year-ago quarter. This also doubled Apple’s market share from 5.9% a year ago to 10.2% according to Strategy Analytics.

Apple is currently in fifth place in the smart speaker race. The tech giant was late to market and the original homepod was far too expensive compared to the competition. It offered amazing sound but consumers had already picked up Amazon Alexa powered devices in their millions thanks to the low price. On a brighter note for Apple, they are just 0.6% behind fourth-placed Alibaba.

The current market leaders are Amazon with 26.4% share, Google with 20.5% share and Baidu with 13.6% share. It’ll be interesting to see how this shifts after Q4 2021 sales are reported. Q4 covers the crucial holiday season and will include sales of the new colour options for the HomePod Mini. In any case, it looks like Apple’s ambitions for the smart speaker are on the up.

I imagine the HomePod Mini (currently priced at £99 in the UK) will fall in price in 2022. You can often find it on sale at the big box technology retailers. And for Apple, the cost to manufacture typically falls with time. With its S5 chip, support for ultrawideband technology and fantastic sound, there isn’t much of a reason for Apple to update the HomePod Mini this year. But a price cut to increase sales further and gain market share would make a ton of sense.

It isn’t a secret that Apple likes to keep its customers inside the walls of the Apple ecosystem. That extends to the home with features like the Home App and HomeKit. And a smart speaker with Siri built-in is critical to Apple’s longer-term ambitions for the home. Do you own a HomePod or HomePod Mini? Are there any features you’d like to see Apple add in the future? Let me know in the comments!


Featured Image: James Yarema via Unsplash

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