Triton Digital 375

There’s more evidence that smart speakers are growing as a device used by Americans to consume AM/FM radio programming. The portion of listening to U.S. AM/FM streams that occurs on smart speakers climbed to 22% in December 2020, up from 19% in December 2019 and 17% in December 2018. That represents a 29% increase in the share of AM/FM streaming taking place on smart speakers in two years.

The increase isn’t coming at the expense of listening taking place on mobile devices. That still accounts for a plurality of listening, clocking in at 48% for each of the years examined by Triton. “Other” devices, which include desktop and laptop computers, fell from a 35% share in December 2017 to 30% in December 2020.

Additionally, Triton analyzed share by device type for the same period. The data shows a slight shift to uses of what is classified as “other” devices, which includes Apple HomePod, Sonos, Bose, Roku and more. However, Amazon Echo continues to capture the lion’s share of listening at 80%, albeit down from 86% in December 2018. Google Home, meanwhile, grabbed a 16% device share of AM/FM streaming listening in December 2020, up from 11% in December 2018.

“Streaming radio is one of the top content choices on smart speakers,” said John Rosso, President of Market Development at Triton Digital. "With the rapid adoption of smart speakers, it’s no surprise that their contribution to the streaming of AM/FM stations is increasing.”

The Triton numbers follows new data from Edison Research’s ongoing Share of Ear syndicated service which shows broadcast radio continues to cordon off the largest slice of smart speaker listening to ad-supported audio platforms, capturing 35% of listening. Cumulus Media’s Chief Insights Officer Pierre Bouvard revealed this week the smart speaker has grown to represent nearly a quarter of all online listening to Cumulus Media’s radio stations.