Chinese search giant Baidu is now the world’s second-largest vendor of smart speakers, according to a new report. The research says Baidu overtook Google to capture 17.3 % of the worldwide market with 4.5 million shipments within the second quarter of 2019, representing staggering year-on-year growth of 3,700 %. Amazon stays the overall leader with greater than 25 % share of the market and 6.6 million shipments.
Baidu’s AI speakers run on an AI platform referred to as DuerOS. The company initially focused the high end of the market with the Teenage Engineering-designed Raven H speaker, however that product sold poorly. Not too long ago, Baidu has pushed sales of a lot cheaper models, with the primary Xiaodu speaker promoting for as low as 89 yuan (~$12). Baidu overtook earlier domestic leader Alibaba within the first quarter of this year in China.
It’s worth noting that Baidu and Google aren’t direct opponents — Baidu sells its products solely in its home market, whereas Google sells its merchandise nearly everywhere but China. However, Baidu’s explosive development over the past year demonstrates the scale and the dynamics of the Chinese AI ecosystem. Last year CEO Robin Li mentioned in no uncertain terms that Baidu wouldn’t be frightened by the prospect of Google re-entering China.
Google has the benefit of being able to deal with different countries, nonetheless, and an example of that immediately is the launch of the Nest Hub (previously Google Home Hub) in India, another probably large market. The smart display is selling for 9,999 rupees, or about $139. It is reported that Google is bundling Xiaomi’s Mi Security Camera with the Nest Hub as a launch promotion.