With Prime Day just hours away, both Amazon and Google are hoping to woo shoppers with discounts on their smart speakers — but Amazon’s aggressive pricing on both the Echo and Dot could tip the balance in its favor over Google Home.
The latter — Google Home — is already available for just $99, a $30 discount off its regular price. That 23 percent discount can be found on the Google Store website, as well as the websites of other e-commerce shops that sell the device, like Walmart.com, Target.com and others.
But that $30 discount falls short of what Amazon is doing to Echo’s price.
When Prime Day begins tonight at 9:00 p.m. ET, Amazon will cut Echo’s price in half — a 50 percent discount down to $89.99. That’s the lowest price Amazon has ever offered for Echo, $10 less than the $99 introductory price for Prime members back in 2015.
The smaller Echo Dot, normally priced at $49.99, will be available for $34.99 — a 30 percent discount and also the lowest price ever for Dot.
Amazon faces competition not only from Google Home, but also from the upcoming Apple HomePod and devices that offer similar smart functionality from Microsoft’s Cortana. Numerous studies have concluded that Google Home is the smartest of these devices (not including HomePod, which isn’t available yet), but as our Greg Sterling recently suggested, brains may not matter to consumers as much as price and other features.
With each of the first two Prime Days, Amazon has been more aggressive in promoting its own products — from smart speakers like Echo and Dot to its Kindle device family and its many other in-house brands that offer food, clothing and more. This Prime Day seems likely to continue that trend.
Amazon has never revealed how many Echo devices it’s sold — whether in sum or as part of special sale events like Prime Day, Black Friday and so forth. But a year ago, the company did say that Prime Day 2016 was Echo’s biggest single sales day, with orders up 2.5x over the prior best day. With a 50 percent discount this year, Echo appears primed to break that record again.