Amazon, Google, and Roku Are Fighting with Sticks!

Area Vice President, Consumer Insights

There’s a new TV trend: streaming sticks.  For those unaware of these devices, streaming sticks are about the size of a USB thumb drive and plug into an HDMI port on your TV.  Sticks enable you to stream/cast content from your phone, tablet, or laptop to your TV.

 

People are using them for things like Netflix, YouTube, HBO Go, Pandora, and playing games.  I like it for showing my kids YouTube videos like this GoPro one of Hello Kitty in Space.

In this market there are three major players:  Amazon, Google, and Roku.

We took a look at the online behavior of millions of consumers’ shopping habits over the last year and found that across all eCommerce activity at 100 online merchants, (all product categories – think everything from sticks to shoes to cell phones to sunscreen) the top two selling items by units were the Amazon Fire TV Stick and the Google Chromecast, combining for an astounding 4.8 million units in the US alone.

Streaming Sticks

For the first seven months of 2015, Amazon, led the charge with 49% of dollar sales with its $39 Fire TV Stick. Google, which created the category with its $35 Chromecast, came in second place with 41% of the market. Roku, which was an early innovator in streaming, was in third place with 10% of the market. Roku, it should be noted, has the most expensive streaming stick at $50.

Analyzing total unit sales, Google has performed better than Amazon during this year. The Chromecast accounted for 47% of stick sales compared to 45% for Amazon and 8% for Roku.

We wondered what impact Amazon Prime Day, which occurred on July 15, 2015, had.  On that day Amazon dropped the price of the Fire TV Stick by 38% from $39 to $24.

Amazon’s stick took a huge 64% of the dollar share in the market in July, increasing its share 14 points over June.

Where are people buying these things?

The last item we studied was the sales distribution. We found the vast majority of all the sales of streaming sticks occurred from Amazon. Close to 98% of Fire TV Sticks, 88% of the Chromecasts and 85% of the Roku’s were sold through Amazon.com.

Methodology

1010data’s Ecom Insights panel consists of millions of online shoppers in the U.S. who allow 1010data to anonymously track their online behavior for market research purposes, including e-commerce activity.

1010data applies advanced, proprietary statistical modeling, machine learning, and data science techniques to ensure that its panel is representative of the Internet Browsing Population in the U.S. and suitable to extrapolate observations to the broader population.

Retailers measured include the top 100 online mass retailers in the United States that – according to 1010data’s estimates – make up over 95% of hard line goods ordered online Total Spent. In this analysis the Google Store was not included.