The overall shipments of wireless speakers market were estimated at 227 million units in 2020, and it is expected to reach a volume of 500 million by the end of 2026, registering a CAGR of 13.5% during the forecast period from 2021 to 2026. The growing investment in the smart home segment, increasing preference for portable speakers, and increasing product innovations in the wireless speaker segment are some of the major factors driving the adoption of wireless speakers. Due to the high rate of product innovation in the studied market, most wireless speakers now come at affordable prices. They are convenient to use, which is further creating opportunities in the studied market.
- The growing trend of smart speakers across the globe, mainly due to the trending feature of voice assistant, is further developing space for the wireless speakers. In recent years, the growing investment by millennial users in the speakers market and their preference for convenient and easy-to-carry devices have forced global speaker manufacturers to shift to wireless technology from wired speakers. Initially, most market vendors target millennial users who like to carry their speakers around while playing music. Companies like Google and Amazon are increasingly targeting this customer base in recent years. Market vendors are also providing additional features such as splash resistant or water-resistant into their offering to attract more customers.
- Although, presently, Bluetooth speakers are accounting for significant market share in many of the regions; however, the trend is mainly shifting towards Wi-Fi speakers. Features like latency, reliability, direct connection to the internet, and multiple modes are some of the advantages of Wi-Fi speakers over the Bluetooth reported by many customers. Companies like Sonos are selling Wi-Fi speakers that support audio up to 16-bit depth, 1,536kbps bitrate, and 48 kHz sample rates above the CD-quality level. An initiative like the Wireless Speaker and Audio Association (WiSA), consisting of more than 60 electronics companies, promotes standards and high-resolution audio across wireless speakers, which further supports product innovation in the market.
- Additionally, increasing subscription or usage on online music and video streaming platform have spurred the market growth, globally. With a massive growth in the global music streaming revenue from USD 1.4 billion in 2013 to USD 8.9 billion in 2018, the online streaming platform also experienced an increase driven by customers’ engagement with streaming, particularly paid subscription audio streaming. Moreover, market vendors like Sonos recently launched Sonos Radio, a free, ad-supported streaming radio experience that brings 60,000 global stations to sound system. This is also driving the demand for wireless speakers. Google Home Max, Amazon Echo Dot 3rd Gen and JBL Link 10 are some wireless smart speakers with AI technology. It is expected that the end-user spending on a virtual personal assistant enabled wireless speakers are estimated to cross USD 3.5 billion by 2021.
- The COVID-19 is expected to have a significant impact on the market in the current year. It is anticipated to continue to have an effect for the first two quarters of the year following it, as the supply chain has experienced a considerable disruption owing to the COVID-19 being declared as a pandemic. Asian countries such as China, India, South Korea, Taiwan, and Japan, who have a significant presence of manufacturers of the raw materials used in wireless speakers manufacturing, have experienced lockdown and disrupted the production schedules. The sales have been down as the lockdown in most of the global economies has been resulted in deliveries limited to essentials and has resulted in companies revising their revenue targets. However, in many countries, the Smart Home segment products witnessed increased demand after the ease of lockdown.
Key Market Trends
Bluetooth Wireless Speakers are Expected to Hold the Major Share
- The need and popularity of the wireless speakers bolstered the demand for Bluetooth speakers over the past few years. This trend can be attributed to the greater availability of these devices at affordable prices and the consumer preference for smart portable devices. The growing trend of True Wireless Connectivity (TWS), where one can connect two Bluetooth speakers and double the output, is mainly driving the adoption of Bluetooth speakers among the millennials. Although multiroom wireless speakers that connect directly to the Internet instead of relying on phone or computer, meaning preventing calls, texts, and other notifications from interrupting playback have posed a challenge to Bluetooth speakers.
- Moreover, Chromecast built-in speakers have also threatened the demand for Bluetooth speakers, as they can instantly stream music, radio, or podcasts from a mobile device to speakers. Unlike Bluetooth setup, Chromecast built-in speakers work over Wi-Fi to connect more than one device to speakers at a time and control what’s playing from anywhere in the house. Nevertheless, constant product innovations and advancements have sustained the market for Bluetooth speakers. These encroachments include developing water-resistant speakers to connect more than one device with considerable battery life.
- At IFA 2019, JBL launched Pulse 4, a speaker with 360- degree sound and a light show that uses high-resolution LEDs to create a party mood with music and light. The new speaker has Wireless Bluetooth streaming enabling up to two smartphones or tablets to be connected simultaneously. In the same year, Sony Corporation launched the SRS-XB12 EXTRA BASS Waterproof Bluetooth speaker in India. This speaker is IP67-rated, which makes it resistant to dust and water. In June 2020, China-based Huawei announced launching its FreeGo portable Bluetooth speakers next month built to produce the one-touch sound transmission along with wireless sound transmission.
- Furthermore, while Zakk, in 2019, launched Woodstock wireless Bluetooth speaker delivering an output of 24W, and come with built-in mic and subwoofer, and universal connectivity, Boat introduced its Boat Stone 1400 speaker, in the same year, that came equipped with Bluetooth v4.2 with a transmission range of 10 meters. Moreover, the evolution of lithium-ion batteries helped the portable speaker market immensely by offering more extended playtime with the need for frequent charging. Power banks and quick charging technology assisted in fuelling the demand by addressing charging concerns and reducing the weight of speakers.
North America is Expected to Hold Major Share
- North America is expected to hold a prominent share in the wireless speaker market. The technological breakthroughs have assisted the advancement of wireless speakers that can significantly improve accuracy in various applications. The United States had marked the beginning of early use of portable speakers, owing to increased penetration of smartphones and other mobile devices along with the availability of online music and video streaming at the earliest. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, the paid subscription streaming music revenue in the United States rose from USD 474 million in the first half of 2015 to USD 3300 million in the first half of 2019, which was more than any other country.
- According to the Consumer Technology Association, in the United States, in 2019, 88% of the wireless speakers sold in the country were Bluetooth feature enabled followed by Wi-Fi- and smart speakers with 67% and 62% shares, respectively. Moreover, the exponential proliferation of smart devices or other dedicated wireless controllers propels smart speakers' requirements and boosts the country's wireless speaker market. According to the Consumer Technology Association, wireless speaker sales in the United States increased from 17.75 million units in 2015 to 71.11 million units in 2019, which was a considerable rise.
- In support of this demand for wireless speakers, the extensive use of Bluetooth technology further strengthens the market demand. Sony, Philips, Panasonic, and Bose are the most used speakers in the country. Furthermore, for companies like Bose based out of North America, the United States generates a significant portion of revenues. For companies like Sony Corporation and Samsung Group that are found out of the Asia-Pacific region, the United States offers a lucrative opportunity for expansion. This is owing to rapid technological developments and higher smart home penetration in the region.
- In September 2019, US-based Bose extended its line of multiroom wireless audio speakers and launched Portable Home Speaker. This battery-powered smart speaker has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity and support for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa voice assistants. In June 2020, US-based telecom company, Comcast corporation announced to extend free access to its 1.5 million public Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots to everyone, including people who are not customers, for the remainder of 2020. The move comes as the US looks to reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The wireless speaker market is quite fragmented, as changing consumer demands are pushing companies to innovate in the space to attract more consumers. The competition in this market has intensified over the years, with companies launching a multitude of products to attract consumers. Some of the market players are Sony Corporation, Harman International Industries, Bose Corporation, Sonos Inc., and Amazon.com Inc.
- May 2020 - Sony unveiled its new SRS-XB wireless speakers for 2020. These three new devices (the SRS-XB23, SRS-XB33, and SRS-XB43) are based on the OEM's X-Balanced Speaker Unit, which has specially-designed non-circular and off-center speaker diaphragms. The distortion is reduced by 25% in the XB33, while sound pressure is raised by 30%, compared to its predecessor, the XB32.
- April 2020 - Harman launched its first eco-friendly portable Bluetooth speaker. The JBL Flip 5 Eco edition, the company's first portable Bluetooth speaker, was made of 90% recycled plastic. The Flip 5 Eco comes in 'Ocean' blue and 'Forest' green, and the special edition speakers are packaged in eco-friendly packaging, including a protective case made of biodegradable materials.
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1.2 Scope of the Study
4.2 Industry Value Chain Analysis
4.3 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis
4.3.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers
4.3.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers
4.3.3 Threat of New Entrants
4.3.4 Threat of Substitute Products
4.3.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry
4.4 Assessment of COVID-19 impact on the Industry
5.1.1 Increased Usage of Wireless Portable Speakers
5.1.2 Growing Demand in Smart Home Segment
5.2 Market Restraints
5.2.1 Signal Interference that Causes Degradation in the Sound Quality
7.1.2 Wi-Fi (Incl. Combo Speakers and Excl. Smart Speakers)
7.1.3 Smart Speakers
7.2.1 North America
7.2.3 Asia Pacific
7.2.4 Latin America
7.2.5 Middle East and Africa
8.1.1 Bose Corporation
8.1.2 Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd (Harman International Industries Inc.)
8.1.3 Sonos Inc.
8.1.4 Sony Corporation
8.1.5 Koninkluke Philips NV
8.1.6 Beats Electronics LLC (Apple Inc.)
8.1.7 Amazon.com Inc.
8.1.8 Logitech International
8.1.9 Panasonic Corporation
8.1.10 Pioneer Electronics Inc.
8.1.11 Bang & Olufsen
8.1.12 LG Electronics Inc.
8.1.13 Google LLC
8.1.14 Baidu Inc
8.1.15 Xiaomi Corporation
A selection of companies mentioned in this report includes:
- Bose Corporation
- Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd (Harman International Industries Inc.)
- Sonos Inc.
- Sony Corporation
- Koninkluke Philips NV
- Beats Electronics LLC (Apple Inc.)
- Amazon.com Inc.
- Logitech International
- Panasonic Corporation
- Pioneer Electronics Inc.
- Bang & Olufsen
- LG Electronics Inc.
- Google LLC
- Baidu Inc
- Xiaomi Corporation