Haier, Midea and Samsung are leading the major home appliance (MHA) market, accounting for almost 30 percent of unit shipments in 2018, according to the latest edition of Omdia’s Major Home Appliances Vendor Scorecard Report.
In a range between a minimum of 1.0 and a maximum of 5.0, Haier came in with the highest overall score, at 4.5, indicating strong adoption of its solutions. Haier was followed by Midea and Samsung, with equal scores of 4.3 between. In another score measuring market momentum and potential for expansion, Haier also achieved the highest score of 4.4, closely followed by Midea and in third position Samsung with 4.3 and 3.6 points, respectively.
“The market leadership of Haier, Midea and Samsung is the result of their efforts to offer solutions that address every segment of the MHA market,” said Liliana Alvarez Temix, senior analyst, smart home and appliances for Omdia. “Riding on their positive momentum, these companies are likely to cement and expand their leadership positions in the future.”
Haier offers IoT ecosystem for home appliances
Haier has consolidated its leadership position through the integration of brands in its portfolio and the development of its own IoT ecosystem, called U+. The ecosystem provides online customer support services that guide users on how to install, use, clean and maintain home appliances.
One of the technological innovations giving Haier its competitive edge is the embedded voice control function in its air conditioners, wall ovens, refrigerators and washing machines as well as other connected appliances. The company has also distinguished itself with the air-purifying function of its room air conditioners and the food-recognition capabilities of its microwaves. GE Appliances, a subsidiary of Haier, has also reinvented the stove-top ventilation appliance with its Kitchen Hub that doubles as a smart home control center.
Midea stresses environmental innovations
Midea, the second largest MHA manufacturer globally, is also delivering industry-changing innovations. To satisfy the demand for more environmentally-friendly appliances in Europe, Midea plans to launch an energy and water-efficient double drawer dishwasher, which gives users the option to use a single drawer to clean smaller loads. The brand has also developed a refrigerator with the flexibility to switch off compartments that are not being used and that can be used either for refrigeration or freezing. Midea also has embedded voice control in several of its air conditioner, refrigerator and wall oven models.
Midea and Haier are among the few brands with appliances that are not only supported by their own IoT platforms, but also are compatible with the leading digital assistants: Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Alibaba’s Tmall AliGenie.
Samsung strives to create unified experience for consumers
Samsung ranked first in brand strength due to its SmartThings platform, which combines its brands with thousands of others to create a unified experience. When it comes to technological innovation in home appliances, Samsung is one of the top choices due to the integration of air-purifying features in its room air conditioners.
Room air conditioners are in demand in Asia and are one of the main areas of focus among the top brands. This is expected since these products contribute the most to the global MHA market in terms of shipment. Room air conditioners also have the highest penetration rate when it comes to connected major home appliances.
Going one step beyond its competition, Samsung has incorporated computer vision technology in its refrigerators. Furthermore, Samsung was one of the first to market an embedded voice control (Bixby) as a feature in its major home appliances.
Another innovative feature that’s common across the Haier, Midea and Samsung product lines is automatic soap/detergent dispensing. The latest washing machines and dishwashers from these brands use artificial intelligence to detect the load size and even soil-level and then dispense the precise amount of cleaning solution. This has been a positive innovation that has resonated well with consumers looking for environmentally-friendly appliances.