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Cumulus 2022 Audioscape Details Smart Speakers Findings


Cumulus Media
Cumulus Media

The recently released Cumulus Media 2022 Audioscape examines podcast consumer and smart speaker trends using data from Edison Research's "Share of Ear" Report from Q2 2022. This week's Cumulus Media | Westwood One Audio Active Group blog focuses on smart speakers finding ownership rates are in the mid-40 percentile for 13-54s but only 27% for those over the age of 55. Only one in four Americans over the age of 55 own a smart speaker, perhaps due to limited perceived benefits.

Here are more key findings on smart speakers:

  • Smart speaker ownership has stalled, with the last growth spurt occurring during Christmas, 2020 after smart speaker ownership soared from 7% to 33% from 2017 to 2019. The pandemic froze purchases until Christmas, 2021 when ownership jumped to 40% in Q1 2021. Since then, ownership has stalled with no post-Christmas "pop" in 2021.

  • As smart speaker ownership flattens, the share of AM/FM radio streaming on smart speakers also stabilizes: According to Triton Digital, since 2021, AM/FM radio streaming via smart speaker has stabilized, growing slightly from 25% to 27%.

  • Smart speakers are vital to U.S. AM/FM radio as they are now more likely to be the only "radio device" in the home: Edison's recent Infinite Dial study revealed that 40% of smart speaker owners do not have a radio in their home, up from 28% in 2018.

  • With an 80% penetration of smart speaker homes, Amazon Alexa is the dominant smart speaker device.

  • Given Alexa's dominant device footprint, it is no surprise that Amazon Music is the most listened to platform on smart speakers. According to Edison's "Share of Ear" Q2 2022, 20% of all tuning minutes on smart speakers goes to Amazon Music.

  • Aggressive promotion pays off as AM/FM radio is number one for smart speaker ad-supported audio shares.

  • As with podcast listening, smart speaker ownership over-indexes in top markets and under-indexes in smaller markets. In the top 10 DMAs, smart speaker ownership is 17% more likely than average. In markets 51 and smaller, ownership is 20% less likely.

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