Google Triumphs Over Amazon In Smart Home Brand Equity Battle

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Issue Impacts Health of Other Samsung Brands

05:26 PM EDT Aug 16, 2017 Rating
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Yet Samsung Holds Stronger Connection with Consumers at Overall Brand Level

Microsoft, Canon, Bose, Google, HP, Apple and Fitbit Named Technology Brands of the Year


NEW YORK, August 17, 2017 – Despite Amazon’s first-to-market status in the smart home race, Google Home bests Amazon Echo in brand equity ratings, according to new research from The Harris Poll’s 29th annual EquiTrend Study, which measures brand health over time. The Harris Poll study reveals the strongest brands across the media, travel, financial, automotive, entertainment, retail, restaurant, technology, household and nonprofit industries based on consumer response.

The Harris Poll’s EquiTrend Brand Equity Index is comprised of three factors - Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration - that result in a brand equity rating, or a summary metric of a brand’s health, for each brand. This year’s study shows that Google Home, the Smart Home Device Brand of the Year, garners higher brand equity ratings (68 compared to Amazon Echo’s 62), and higher familiarity ratings (Google Home holds a familiarity rating of 61%, compared to Amazon Echo’s 46%), despite the fact that it had been in the market for less than one year[1]. Meanwhile, consumers see Amazon Echo as the challenger or a brand “on the way up” in the smart home category.

“It’s unusual to see Amazon pressured for category leadership, but Google Home entered the market strong and didn’t quit,” said Joan Sinopoli, vice president of brand solutions at The Harris Poll. “Even though it has been in the market a shorter time, Google Home easily surpassed Amazon Echo on familiarity ratings, carrying it to brand equity leadership. We expect the smart home brand battle between Amazon and Google to continue, as smart home products have built strong familiarity and brand equity over the past year, and are poised for continued growth.”

Samsung’s Equity Challenges

According to the Harris Poll study, Samsung’s smartphone brand equity declined in 2017 (compared to the previous year) as a result of the Galaxy Note 7 recall (-5.4). While the decline is not unexpected, the brand equity impact for the Samsung master brand and other Samsung product brands is noteworthy. Brand equity ratings for Samsung Galaxy smartphone (-5.4) and Galaxy Gear smart watch (-3.3), declined significantly since 2016; Galaxy tablets continued a slide resulting in a significant loss in equity vs. 2015 (-2.4); while brand equity for the Samsung master brand dropped nearly three points. Brand equity tends to resist movement so the brand equity gains and declines are significant.

“There is reason for Samsung to be concerned, as the Galaxy Note 7 crisis allowed Apple iPhone to strengthen its smart phone hold,” said Sinopoli. “The crisis also created challenges for the company’s entire mobile device franchise. Still, Samsung remains a strong brand. Home appliances and home entertainment are holding steady, and even with the decline, Samsung’s master brand is one of the strongest brands we measure. Brands can recover; Samsung need look no further than Volkswagen, Carnival, and Bank of America, all of which are bouncing back from earlier crises. The Samsung Galaxy S8 has enjoyed excellent reviews, but it is critical that the new Note launch demonstrate that Samsung has left its problems behind.” 

Brand Battle: Apple vs. Samsung

Despite its equity decline for the master brand’s various product brands, Samsung maintains a stronger emotional connection with consumers at the master brand level over Apple (Samsung holds a 74 emotional connection rating compared to Apple’s 70 rating.) Meanwhile, consumers’ love for Apple remains stronger at the product level.

“Looking at the Apple and Samsung master brands, when it comes to consumers’ love or emotional connection, Samsung clearly leads, benefiting from its presence throughout the home,” said Sinopoli.  “But at the product level, when the brands compete head-to-head, Apple product brands frequently lead, especially this year. Samsung needs to leverage consumers’ positive connection with its master brand in order to compete more effectively with Apple at the product level.” 


The Harris Poll 2017 EquiTrend Brand Equity Index

Master Brand Emotional Connection with Consumers (Top 2 Box)

Consumers in Love with the Samsung Master Brand, for Apple it’s the Product Brand



The Harris Poll 2017 EquiTrend Brand Equity Index

Product Brand Emotional Connection with Consumers (Top 2 Box)

Consumers in Love with the Samsung Master Brand, for Apple it’s the Product Brand




The brands’ competition continues in the smart watch category, with Apple Watch claiming the Smart Watch Brand of the Year title from Samsung, which held the top position in 2015 – 2016. Consumers are most familiar with the Apple Watch, followed by Samsung and Sony. The Apple Watch holds the highest quality ratings, while purchase consideration for Apple, Samsung and Sony smart watches are comparable.

Technology Brands of the Year

Brands ranking highest in equity receive the Harris Poll EquiTrend “Brand of the Year” award for their respective categories. This year, more than 100,000 U.S. consumers assessed more than 4,000 brands across more than 450 categories. The full Harris Poll EquiTrend Brands of the Year list can be found at


The 2017 Harris Poll EquiTrend Technology Brands of the Year

Award Category


Computer Manufacturer 

Microsoft Computers 

Digital Camera 

Canon Digital Cameras 

Home Entertainment Electronics 

Bose Home Entertainment Electronics 

Media Streaming Device 

Google Chromecast 


HP Printers 

Smart Home Device 

Google Home 


Apple iPhone 

Smart Watch 

Apple Watch 

Tablet Computer 

Apple iPad Series Tablets 

Wearable Fitness Tech  

Fitbit Fitness Trackers 


Other Key Findings

Additional technology findings include:


The 2017 Harris Poll EquiTrend Study is based on a sample of 102,617 U.S. consumers ages 15 and over surveyed online, in English, between December 30, 2016 and February 21, 2017.  The survey took an average of 30 minutes to complete. The total number of brands rated was 4,052. Each respondent was asked to rate a total of 40 randomly selected brands. Each brand received approximately 1,000 ratings. Data was weighted to be representative of the entire U.S. population of consumers ages 15 and over based on age by sex, education, race/ethnicity, region, income, and data from respondents ages 18 and over were also weighted for their propensity to be online. Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Poll surveys. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in our panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

The Brand Equity Index is the keystone to the EquiTrend program, providing an understanding of a brand’s overall strength. A brand’s Equity is determined by a calculation of Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration. Brand of the Year is determined by a simple ranking of brands.

The Harris Poll EquiTrend methodology has been validated by academic business experts in the Journal of Marketing Research (1994) and International Journal of Research on Marketing (2012).

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

About The Harris Poll
Over the last five decades, Harris Polls have become media staples. With comprehensive experience and precise technique in public opinion polling, along with a proven track record of uncovering consumers' motivations and behaviors, The Harris Poll has gained strong brand recognition around the world. The Harris Poll offers a diverse portfolio of proprietary client solutions to transform relevant insights into actionable foresight for a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer packaged goods.

Harris Poll EquiTrend study results disclosed in this release may not be used for advertising, marketing or promotional purposes without the prior written consent of Harris Poll. All third party trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Use of such trademarks does not constitute or imply any sponsorship or endorsement.

[1] Google Home was in market for less than one year when study was fielded. 

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