About Futuresource Consulting

Futuresource Consulting, the specialist research and consulting company, is delighted to be the official knowledge partner for CEATEC JAPAN. The company can trace its roots back to the 1980s and provides market insights into consumer electronics, digital imaging, entertainment media, broadcast, optical manufacturing, storage media, professional IT and education technology.
With more than 70 full-time employees providing in-depth analysis and forecasts across consumer and professional electronics categories, Futuresource is able to advise on market, competitive and technological developments, providing clients with access to the information that helps produce the best possible results.

Vol.1662018/8/31

Global Home Audio Market Breaks the $13 Billion Barrier

31 Aug 2018 - The global home audio market continues to climb, with hardware shipments increasing by 23% in 2017, according to a comprehensive new report from Futuresource Consulting.

“It’s not just shipments that are performing well,” says Rasika D’Souza, Senior Market Analyst at Futuresource Consulting. “Last year’s revenues powered through the $13 billion barrier for the first time, finishing 2017 close to the $14 billion mark. And there’s plenty more punch left in the home audio hardware category, with our forecasts showing value growth out to 2021 and shipments continuing to grow beyond that.”

The new Futuresource home audio report explores trends in wireless speakers, soundbars, AV receivers, hi-fi systems and dedicated speaker docks across 38 regions and countries, with market projections out to 2022.

Smart Speakers Leading the Charge

Looking to the wireless speaker segment, smart speakers are leading the charge. The US still accounts for the lion’s share of global demand, though interest in China has been growing rapidly since Q4 2017.

“We’re seeing growth in multiple ownership, further developments in voice platforms and consumer usage extending beyond music,” says D’Souza. “Smart speakers are providing reminders and alarms, acting as kitchen assistants, delivering entertainment content for kids and a range of other benefits, all having a positive impact on uptake.

“Voice is just beginning to emerge as a feature in soundbars too, with a handful of brands launching products at price points under the $400 sweet spot.”

An Object-Orientated Future?

Object-oriented sound is becoming increasingly important in soundbars. The technology takes the sound effects in a movie soundtrack and digitally moves them around three-dimensional space, affording viewers a cinema-like sound experience in their homes.

Dolby currently leads the market, with over 15 models already available and more to be announced by the end of 2018.

“As with so many things, content availability is key to the success of object-oriented sound,” says D’Souza. “You can’t develop customer awareness and drive meaningful growth without it. But its future sounds bright, as the technology is now supported by Sky, Netflix, DirectTV, China Telecom and many others.”

The Word From the Brands

Amazon topped the home audio brand leaderboard for units shipped in 2017, with a market share of 16%. Harman/JBL followed closely behind at 15%, emerging from the competitive fray despite the growing consumer love for smart speakers. Harman/JBL is the only brand other than Amazon and Google that gained share in 2017.

In terms of revenues, Bose and Harman/JBL were tied in top spot, each with a 13% share.