The global earphones and headphones market was valued at USD 10,102 million in 2017 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of more than 6.1% during the forecast period. Headphones comprise two speakers connected to a band, positioning the speakers over ears. Headphones offer a personal and immersive listening experience with the sound source delivering sonic payload into the ears. Headphones with advanced features such as noise cancelling are being developed by market players. Noise cancelling feature offers auditory isolation and retains the noise produced the headphones within the phone muffs without letting the intrusive noises to enter. Earphones are devices developed to be inserted into ears, which convert electrical energy into sound waves. Earphones are in-ear speakers that provide a direct link to the sound source. Earphones are often used by people on the go, travelers, athletes, runners owing to its convenience and portability. Earphones offer a convenient listening experience with its low weight, and ergonomic contours. However, earphones do not have the capability to offer noise cancellation capabilities as compared to headphones owing to its design.
The increase in the demand for wireless earphones and headphones majorly drives the growth of the market. Consumers are increasingly listening to music on portable devices such as smartphones and tablets through music streaming platforms, thereby increasing the demand of earphones and headphones. There has also been a growth in demand of headphones and earphones among the urban consumers owing to its accessibility and compatibility with other audio systems equipped with Bluetooth, NFC, or Wi-Fi connectivity. Other factors driving the market include increasing penetration of smart phones, declining prices of mobile devices, increase in disposable income of consumers, and improvement in lifestyles. However, prolonged use of audio devices at high intensities causes auditory disabilities, limiting the growth of this market. Factors such as unorganized markets, and counterfeit products also restrict the market growth. Rapid technological innovation, and introduction of affordable earphones & headphones offering advanced features provide growth opportunities for the market.
The global earphones and headphones market is segmented on the basis of technology, product, price range, distribution channel, and end-user, and region. Based on type of technology, the market is segmented into wired, and wireless. The product segment is categorized into earphones, and headphones. The price range section is segment into earphones and headphones costing below USD 50, between USD 50-100 and earphones and headphones costing above USD 100. On the basis of distribution channel, the market is segmented into in-store and online. On the basis of end-users, the market is segmented into call centers, aviation, gaming, music & entertainment, fitness, and others. This report comprises a detailed geographic distribution of the market across North America, Europe, APAC and South America, and MEA. North America is further segmented into U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Europe is divided into Germany, UK, Italy, France, and Rest of Europe. Asia-Pacific is bifurcated into China, India, Japan, and Australia, and Rest of Asia-Pacific. Asia-Pacific accounted for the largest share in the global earphones and headphones market in 2017.
The leading players in the market are introducing low cost earphones and headphones to cater to the consumers. Global players are entering new markets in developing regions to expand their customer base and strengthen market presence. In 2016, Sennheiser Electronic GMBH & Co. KG launched PXC 550 wireless headphones, which offers high quality sound, intuitive ear cup-mounted touch control panel, and voice prompt system that enables convenient selection of settings. In March 2016, Sennheiser Electronic GMBH & Co. KG introduced MOMENTUM M2 On-Ear headphones and MOMEMTUM M2 Over-Ear headphones, a line of wireless headphones equipped with wireless technology. This launch expanded the product portfolio of the company and increased its offerings in the market. In June 2016, Bose Corporation introduced Wireless QC noise cancelling headphones and wireless sport headphones. The QC series offers QuietComfort 35 and QuietControl 30, whereas the sport series comprises SoundSport and SoundSport Pulse. The new wireless headphones include NFC for touch-to-pair convenience, super-intuitive controls for music and calls, voice prompts for key information including setup, caller ID, and a long battery life. Other leading players in the market include Sennheiser Electronic GmbH & Co. KG, Sony Corporation, GN Netcom, Audio-Technica Corporation, JVC Corporation, Beats Electronics (Apple, Inc.), Harman International Industries, Inc., Plantronics Pty Ltd., Philips Electronics Ltd., and Bose Corporation among others.