Owner Demographics Change As Smart Speaker Penetration Climbs to 1 in 5 Wi-Fi Households

April 18, 2018

This article is included in these additional categories:

Boomers & Older | Demographics & Audiences | Digital | Household Income | Non-mobile Connected Devices | Youth & Gen X

One in every 5 Wi-Fi households in the US owned at least a single Smart Speaker as of February, reveals comScore in a new examination of the devices, meaning that Smart Speaker penetration doubled in just 6 months. The biggest jump in household penetration came between November (12%) and December (17%) of last year, which comScore attributes to the devices being featured in Black Friday promotions and advertising.

(For comparison’s sake, a new Parks Associates study suggests that 15% of US braodband households owned a Smart Speaker with a personal assistant as of Q4 2017, which is generally in line with comScore’s figures.)

A growing number of households are also using multiple Smart Speakers, per comScore’s report. As of February of this year, 3 in 10 Smart Speaker households featured multiple such devices, up from 20% in June 2017. In fact, more than 1 in 10 Smart Speaker households had at least 3 devices as of February.

Owner Demographics Change

As Smart Speaker penetration expands, the demographics of the households owning them is changing.

For example, homes with 35-44-year-olds continue to over-index the average, but by a smaller amount than in months prior. As of February, households with the 35-44 segment were 14% more likely than the Wi-Fi household average to own a Smart Speaker, down from a 22% above-average likelihood in October 2017.

By contrast, households at the age extremes have become increasingly likely to own a Smart Speaker. Those featuring the 18-24 segment, for example, are now just 9% less likely than the average Wi-Fi household to own a Smart Speaker, up from being 30% less likely in October.

Meanwhile, households featuring adults ages 65 and older are now just 15% less likely than the average Wi-Fi home to own such a device, up from being 22% less likely in October 2017.

It’s not only the age demographics that are changing: distribution by household income is also starting to (slowly) level out. Whereas in October 2017 households with more than $150k in income had been almost twice as likely (81% more; Index of 181) as the typical Wi-Fi home to own a Smart Speaker, that Index figure fell to 126 in February.

During the same time period, the Index figure for households with less than $75k in household income grew from 62 to 77, meaning that they’re now only 23% less likely than the typical household to own a Smart Speaker.

More on Smart Speaker owners can be found here.


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