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Who Will Win the Smart Speaker War in Canada?

The Smart Speaker Series l Infographic

What Does Usage Look Like?

In 2019, 5.8 million people in Canada will use a smart speaker at least once a month. That's a 51.2% increase from 2018, according to eMarketer estimates.

By 2020, we expect 6.7 million people in Canada—or 17.9% of the population—will use a smart speaker.

"Canada has the potential to be a huge market for smart speakers," said eMarketer forecasting analyst Jaimie Chung.

"Growth drivers are similar to the US—people are becoming more comfortable with using voice assistants, they're seeing the benefits of interacting via voice instead of a screen, and speakers make a great holiday gift," she added.

Who Will Win in Canada: Google or Amazon?

Google Home is by far the most popular smart speaker in Canada.

According to a Media Technology Monitor and CBC/Radio Canada survey, more than half (55%) of smart speaker owners in Canada own a Google Home, followed by nearly a quarter (22%) of Amazon Echo owners.

Google was also the first to support Canadian English and French language when it launched in the market in June 2017. Amazon’s Alexa added the ability to understand French Canadian in October 2018, nearly one full year after the launch of the Amazon Echo in Canada.

"While there is no company better than Google in monetizing digital audiences, Alexa’s close ties to Amazon’s ecommerce engine make it better positioned to offer paid promotion of items and simple transacting," said eMarketer analyst Paul Briggs in the Canada Trends in 2019 report. "Amazon has discussed paid promotion on Alexa with brand marketers like Clorox and Procter & Gamble, considering a range of promotional vehicles that include targeting based on purchase history."