Apple enters the home speaker market with new product HomePod
Apple is entering the home speaker market. During Monday's (June 5th) WWDC 17 keynote in San Jose, California, the company announced the HomePod, it's first new product since 2015's Apple Watch.
The HomePod will compete with the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Sonos' industry leading, multi-room speakers. Retailed at $349, the device is alot more expensive than its competitors but the company backs up its high pricing to the integration of high quality sound and great features.
Unlike it's competitors, music is at the center of the HomePod. Powered by Siri, you will be able to play music from the Apple Music's library, which includes over 40 million songs. In addition to playing music at your request, Siri will keep track of your music preferences and help you discover new music. When you're not playing music, the HomePod functions as a home assistant, answering your questions about the weather, sports or news and has the ability to control your HomeKit supported smart home devices.
Structurally, the HomePod is seven inches tall and comes equipped with six microphone, seven tweeters, a custom made 4-inch sub-woofer, and an Apple A8 chip. The device will also have spatially awareness capabilities. Through its automatic room-sensing technology, the HomePod can learn its position in a room and optimize for the best audio.
There's alot to be excited about with the HomePod. This is especially true if you're an avid Apple producer user like myself. What I like the best about Apple is that all of its devices are easy to integrate and use together. That is one advantage that it has over its competitors and will continue to have until more companies start streamlining their products. For this alone, is the reason that I tend to purchase Apple products over products designed by other companies even if that product functions better. It likely will be the reason that I do purchase the HomePod sometime in the future even though I have a Amazon Echo that works perfectly fine and is so far looking to be a better product than Apple's device when it comes to it's voice recognition system.
Siri's been out for a while now, but Apple has done very little to improve it. How many times have you asked Siri a question and she didn't respond efficiently? As with most of their products, Apple will have no problem selling the HomePod but it's long-term success will depend greatly on how much Siri is improved and how much people care about the music listening experience in their homes.
Will the HomePod just be another speaker or will it really reinvent music in the home as Apple hopes? We'll have to wait and see until December when the highly anticipated device is available to the U.S, U.K, and Australia.
For more on the HomePod, head over to Apple. Stay tuned for future updates.