Amazon's Echo dominates the voice-controlled speaker market in the US

Tyrone Stewart

Amazon Echo35.6m Americans will use a voice-controlled personal assistant device at least once a month this year, with more than 70 per cent of the US citizens opting for an Amazon Echo speaker.

According to eMarketer’s forecast on users of digital assistants, 70.6 per cent of US AI assistant speaker users will use an Amazon Echo device this year – with Google Home adoption a long way behind at 23.8 per cent of the market.  The remaining 5.6 per cent is made up of smaller smart speaker providers such as Lenovo, LG, Harmon Kardon and Mattel.

“Consumers are becoming increasingly comfortable with the technology, which is driving engagement,” said Martín Utreras, VP of forecasting at eMarketer. “As prices decrease and functionality increases, consumers are finding more reasons to adopt these devices.”

Looking more broadly at virtual assistants themselves, eMarketer expects usage to grow by 23.1 per cent this year – as 60.5m Americans using Alexa, Siri, Now, Cortana, or another virtual assistant, at least once a month. This would equate to 27.5 per cent of smartphone users, or nearly a fifth of the US population.

Digital assistant usage will be seen the most in the 25 to 34 age bracket. The age group represents 26.3 per cent of virtual assistant users, and 33.5 per cent of the generation will use a virtual assistant this year.

“Older millennials are the core users of virtual assistants, mainly due to their demand for functionality over entertainment,” Utreras said.