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Why Apple Is Experimenting with a HomePod Price Discount

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$50 off refurbished HomePod

This holiday season marks the first holiday quarter for Apple (AAPL) with a smart speaker product on the market. Its HomePod smart speaker product went on sale in February, about two years after Google (GOOGL) entered the smart speaker market and about four years after Amazon (AMZN) began selling smart speakers under its Echo brand.

Apple’s HomePod normally costs $349, but this holiday season, the company is allowing its customers to save $50 on the purchase of a refurbished HomePod, marking the first time that Apple is selling its smart speaker product at a discount.

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Amazon and Google sell cheaper smart speakers

Amazon and Google sell smart speakers that cost as low as $50, and this has allowed them to dominate the global smart speaker market. In selling HomePods at a discount, Apple could be experimenting to see how pricing tweaks can help its campaigns for a larger share of the smart speaker market.

Even before the latest HomePod price discount, Apple was reported to be considering launching a lower-priced HomePod to try to boost sales.

A crowding market

In addition to Amazon and Google, Apple is battling for control of the smart speaker market with Yandex (YNDX) and Facebook (FB). Yandex launched its Station smart speaker in May, and the product went on sale in July, with its price starting at $160. Facebook’s Portal smart speaker with a display screen launched last month and went on sale earlier this month, with prices in the range of $199–$349. As the smart speaker market becomes more and more crowded, some vendors may be looking at waging a pricing war to stay competitive.

Global sales of smart speakers are expected to generate $2.7 billion in revenue this year, according to MarketsandMarkets.

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