The Siri-powered speaker will be available in the United States, the UK, and Australia starting February 9, with pre-orders going live from January 26. Apple launched its first smart speaker HomePod back in September previous year, together with the latest iPhones, and it was expected to hit the shelves by the end of 2017.
Apple announced Tuesday that its HomePod speaker device - the company's version of Amazon Echo or Google Home - will be released february 9 for $349. Further, the HomePod is tagged at $349 which is pricey compared to the smart speakers already available in the market. The major difference here however is that Apple's smart speaker will be powered by Siri, the same digital assistant that's now available on iOS devices and macOS computers. With built-in Siri, you can set reminders, check messages or control your smart home appliances with your voice.
Apple's HomePod will come in White and Space Grey, and thanks to its built-in HomeKit support, it'll allow you to control smart appliances around your home, even by using your iPhone from another location. But like we said, the HomePod is pretty expensive if you factor in speakers offered by other tech companies. Multi-room audio and stereo pairing - key features for current wireless speakers (smart or not) - will be missing from the HomePod.
AppleA promotional image for the Apple HomePod.
With the latest news, will you buy now or hold out?
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The speaker will only work with Apple Music at launch, a subscription service that costs $10 per month. They both then balance the audio output to make the listening experience better. Amazon invented the category in 2015 with its line of Echo speakers, and there are now similar options available from Google and Microsoft.
HomePod delivers stunning audio quality wherever it's placed - in any room in the house, playing any style of music. The company back then promised the HomePod's launch in December but it didn't see the light.
Could the addition of more privacy measures be the reason for the HomePod's delay? Don't forget, there are about 45m songs on the Apple Music playlist, so there is pretty much something for everyone.
Apple says the voice-powered device will work with Apple Music, giving access to one of the largest music libraries in the world. Not only HomePods but other AirPlay 2 compatible speakers can also be controlled from the same handset.