HomePod Overview Updated July 13, 2017

HomePod

The new sound of home

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33 HomePod stories

May 2016 - July 2017


At its Worldwide Developer Conference, Apple officially took the wraps off of its oft-rumored speaker in the form of HomePod. The device acts as a standalone way for users to interact with Siri, play music, and more. Tim Cook touts this as Apple’s effort to “reinvent home music” just as it did with products like the iPod.

Prior to announcing Apple’s product, Phil Schiller explained that Apple has worked to take what companies like Sonos and Amazon have done and create a “breakthrough home speaker.”

Schiller explained that a successful speaker must “rock the house,” have “spatial awareness,” and “be a musicologist.”

To offer strong sound quality, the HomePod features a 7 tweeter array with precision acoustic horns and directional control. There’s also an Apple-designed 4-inch woofer and it’s powered by Apple’s A8 chip. It measures in at just under 7-inches tall and features a mesh design.

Here’s how Apple describes HomePod:

HomePod is a powerful speaker that sounds amazing, adapts to wherever it’s playing, and together with Apple Music, gives you effortless access to one of the world’s largest music catalogs. All controlled through natural voice interaction with Siri. It takes the listening experience to a whole new level. And that’s just the beginning.

HomePod will be available in White or Space Gray for $349 in December.

HomePod Stories July 13

AAPL: 147.77

2.03

The sound quality of the HomePod has been a key focus for Apple in its marketing for the smart speaker device, openly comparing it to the inferior audio of the Amazon Echo at WWDC. However, the HomePod isn’t launching until the end of the year and Amazon isn’t standing still.

Engadget sources report that the next Echo will include multiple tweeters inside, which should result in a dramatic improvement in sound. It also seems like the device will look more like a HomePod than the current Echo, substituting hard plastic cylinder for ‘cloth-like’ rounded shell.

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HomePod Stories July 11

AAPL: 145.53

0.47

App analytics company Verto reports that while Siri remains the most popular intelligent assistant, fewer people are using it.

The company measures usage and popularity of voice-based IAs based on six different criteria, and says that five out of the six numbers are down year-on-year …

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HomePod Stories July 4

AAPL: 143.50

-0.52

After Apple’s HomePod announcement, Samsung said to be also planning intelligent speaker

Competition appears to be heating up in the voice-based intelligent speaker market, with Samsung the latest company said to be planning its own version.

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HomePod Stories July 3

AAPL: 143.50

-0.52

Apple’s HomePod is scheduled to arrive this December for $349 in the US, Australia and the UK. Are you planning to pick one up? And will you switch from an Amazon Echo or Google Home in the process?

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HomePod Stories June 27

AAPL: 143.73

-2.09

Apple is looking to hire a “Siri Event Maven” that will serve as Siri’s own personal assistant on events and pop culture happenings trending among humans.

The role will be to make sure that Siri is up to date on all the non-traditional holidays, trending cultural happenings, and events that people might ask about. Apple says the Siri Event Maven will work with the engineers and designers working on Siri “to provide strategic awareness of cultural happenings in the collective zeitgeist.”

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HomePod Stories June 20

AAPL: 145.01

-1.33

Apple’s HomePod teaser was somewhat oddly placed. Two hours into a developer conference without real developer opportunities and six months before the product is ready to ship. Why? Apple surely has a list of reasons like working around leaks and market pressure to show what they’ve been building.

If for no other reason, the teaser was probably intended to whet the appetite of Apple users tempted to jump in to the Amazon Echo ecosystem. I was certainly in that camp, and it worked for a few reasons.

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