Apple's music speaker, the HomePod, is now available for pre-order for $349. It is available for delivery and in Apple Stores on February 9th.
The HomePod will be my first "Smart Speaker". I do not own an Amazon Echo nor a Google Home. I did think about buying an Amazon Echo, but decided to wait; which now in hindsight, I am glad I decided to wait. It is still possible that I might buy an Amazon Echo at some point in the future, but it is not something I need to get right away.
The HomePod is not for everyone. If you use a variety of devices, do not subscribe to Apple Music, and in particular do not have an iPhone, then the HomePod is likely not for you. Apple has positioned the HomePod to be a music speaker first, and smart assistant second. Unlike many, I am the absolute target market for Apple's HomePod. This is because I subscribe to Apple Music and use Apple products almost exclusively. Plus, I am always up for writing about Apple, and the HomePod is the latest of Apple's gadgets.
There are a few questions that I hope to be able to answer with the HomePod. These questions are:
- How well does Siri hear me while music is playing?
- Does the HomePod work as expected with adding items to To Do apps, lists, notes, and the like?
- How well does Siri work as compared to the iPhone when asking the same questions? How about as compared to the Apple Watch?
- What happens when I disable wireless on both my Apple Watch and iPhone, and then try to use the HomePod? What limitations are there?
- Will the HomePod play songs from my library, if I ask it to?
- How does the HomePod sound in a large room that has hardwood, as compared to a carpeted room?
- Can I use the HomePod as a speaker for the Apple TV? If so, how does that work and sound?
- How does the HomePod work with older iOS devices?
I have pre-ordered the Space Gray HomePod for pickup on February 9th. I will give my first impressions after I have used it for a couple of days, and a full review will come later down the road after I have had significant time to use it.
Are there any questions about the HomePod that you would like answered? If so, let me know on Twitter. If you do not want to publicly reply, you can also send me a DM.