Apple is reportedly working on smaller, more affordable HomePod to compete with the likes of Amazon Echo and Google Nest speakers. Also, there have been many signs from Apple that suggest that a new HomePod is indeed on the way.
Apple may not just be looking forward to introducing a new mini HomePod but also refresh the original regular sized HomePod as well. The usual practice before releasing a new model is to sell all the remaining units of the older model.
Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman in a tweet shared that Apple’s HomePod is on sale – $199.99 this week; the price could be fluctuating. Also, he added that the number of units Apple employees can buy has been increased from two to ten – employees receive 50 percent discounts.
It could be Apple trying to clear the inventory to make way for the newer model of the HomePod. Also, in a curious case, the Apple US online store showed that the HomePod was ‘sold out’ but it was quickly back up on the store.
Apple launched the HomePod in 2018 for $349 which is quite expensive; the current $199.99 is a real good deal to all those who have been planning to invest in the Apple ecosystem. The HomePod is a great speaker in terms of audio quality, however it does not receive very positive reviews because of Siri – the virtual assistant that cannot do much.
But over the years, Siri has improved a little and Apple has also added a lot of new features to the HomePod with software updates to make it more useful. Some of the handful of new features are multi-user voice recognition, ambient sounds, multi-room support with multiple speakers, and the Handoff feature.
Google and Amazon offer their low-cost smart speakers for as low as $25. Lets see what Apple has in store.