The 2023 State of Sound Report:
A global analysis of audio consumer behaviors and desires

The State of Sound report compiles key findings from extensive audio research with consumers across the world. The 2023 study surveyed 7,000 smartphone users, with South Korea included for the first time this year.

The report examines the factors that influence audio device purchases, as well as interest in present and future usage scenarios, and is intended to help understand the qualities that consumers seek across a range of audio equipment. The focus of this year’s research is on how consumer use of wireless audio devices is evolving to include more complex use cases, from traditional uses like music listening, voice calls and watching video; to the use of devices in the workplace, for gaming and hearing enhancement.

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Key Findings

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Consumers are seeking one wireless audio device for multiple uses

Respondents want to use the same device for everything - listening to music, gaming, and calls - with 68% indicating they would want to use the same earbuds or headphones for all activities.

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Listeners are actively looking for premium audio experiences, with music quality more important than ever

Premium audio experiences are front of mind for listeners, with 73% stating “I make sure that sound quality on my devices gets better and better with every purchase”, up from 67% in 2022. Demand for music quality is also at an all-time high, with 69% of consumers listing lossless audio quality as a likely purchase driver.

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Comfort is key, because listeners are using devices for longer

This year, comfort is the #1 purchase driver for true wireless earbuds, driven by the fact that consumers are now wearing their devices for longer periods of time than ever before.

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Evolving work environments driving demand for new features

More than two thirds of respondents said they work in a public space such as coffee shop, a common area in the home, or a shared workspace. To cater for a hybrid working world, workers need audio devices which help them ‘hear and be heard’ both in the office, and in other work environments.

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*All percentages, consumer behaviors, and attitudes stated in this report are based only on the responses of the individuals who participated in our survey.