By: Nick Gambino
Oh you thought Apple was just going to sit back while Amazon and Google cornered the digital assistant speaker market? With the announcement of the new Apple HomePod, the tech giant is looking to place Siri directly in your living room.
Now you might be thinking “too little too late,” right? Well Apple promises more than just a smart assistant speaker but a piece of equipment that can compete with Sonos and other high-quality sound boxes.
So it borrows the smart assistant feature that Amazon Echo and Google Home made popular and puts it into a speaker that emits sound on a level appropriate for everyone to bump to.
Apple is so confident in this one-two punch that they’ve slapped a $350 price tag on the sucker. That’s twice the cost of the Echo and almost three times the price of Google Home. That’s even more costly than most of the higher end Sonos products like the Play:3 which goes for $299.
Another thing working against the HomePod is its support of only one music platform, Apple Music. That means no support for Spotify, Pandora, SoundCloud, Prime Music, etc. Sure you can rig AirPlay 2 as a roundabout way to play these services but that’s inconvenient in a device that promotes convenience.
In line with Apple’s M.O. the HomePod tries to keep everything in the family which explains the lack of support for anything outside of Siri and Apple Music.
The new smart digital speaker won’t hit shelves until December, just in time for Christmas wish lists. That means they have time to expand support and compatibility before any official launch.
Here’s hoping they at least realize not everyone uses Apple Music. Some people use Spotify. I know, I know, it’s only 50 million. Not a lot of people, right?
What are your thoughts on the new Apple HomePod? Does it have a chance in the smart assistant speaker market? Talk to us in the comments below!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nick Gambino is a regular script writer and tech beat reporter for NewsWatch. He lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and daughter.