Dealmaster: Sonos feels the HomePod warmth, gives two Sonos Ones for $349

Apple Says Home Pod Uses Less Power Than a Light Bulb

Like the Echo, Apple's HomePod comes with the ability to stream music.

The HomePod is powered by Apple's A8 chip, which also powered the iPhone 6. You can ask him or her the news, which in the United Kingdom will initially come from three sources: BBC, Sky News and LBC. Alarmingly for Sonos, it seems to outgun its own smart speaker, the Sonos One. "We're so excited for people to get HomePod into their homes, apartments and businesses to hear it for themselves".

But while Siri's conversational tone and repertoire have improved significantly, the HomePod's hearing skills weren't always faultless.

By launching the HomePod Apple is aiming to maintain the relevancy of the Siri voice assistant as competition from Google Assistant and Alexa heightens. Amazon Echo speakers start at $49.99 and Google Home speakers start at $49.

After a long delay, finally Apple HomePod is now available to preorder, but it is still limited to United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom in the initial phase. There's already Amazon and Google's Home speakers to contend with.

As for how the HomePod's sound compares with other smart speakers, Apple set up a demo space to match it against the Sonos One, Google Home Max, and Amazon Echo 2, playing the same songs, one at a time. However, there's no way to manually adjust the equalizer settings of the HomePod, which is something you can do with the Sonos and Google Home Max speakers. So if you prefer other music streaming services, like Spotify, the HomePod won't be the best for you.

However, don't let the price alone deter you if you're truly interested in a HomePod.

Apple is now taking pre-orders for the HomePod, but there is some confusion as to whether services like Spotify and devices the Apple TV can be used with the speaker. The HomePod does not yet support multi-room audio or stereo pairing but these features are coming in a future software update. In fact, here are some reasons why it may be worth the cost to you. But in the world of smart speakers - which is where Apple is now competing, despite its desire to make the conversation all about music - those factors are secondary to the simple question, "How much can this thing do for me?" This means users will be forced to pay a monthly fee for Apple Music if they want to listen to music on the speaker. And if your phone is not on the same WiFi as the HomePod, messages won't come through. This all become possible with built-in Siri, Apple's digital assistant.

You don't feel like talking to Alexa or Google Assistant?

One of those boxes is to approve personalization with the HomePod.

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