When Apple Inc.’s HomePod smart speaker went on sale in January, it entered a market pioneered and dominated by Amazon’s Echo lineup of Alexa-powered devices. Apple has been touting the HomePod’s superior sound quality but so far hasn’t enticed many consumers to part with $349.
By late March, Apple had lowered sales forecasts and cut some orders with Inventec Corp., one of the manufacturers that builds the HomePod for Apple, according to a person familiar with the matter… More at Bloomberg.
I was very impressed with the HomePod when I had it for review and was sorry to see it go, but I suspect my usage pattern is similar to enough other people that it may struggle at its current price. I simply do not get the opportunity to listen to music out loud anymore and tend to use earphones 99% of the time for audio. Add to this the fact that Siri is not good in comparison to the competition and the lower sales start to make sense. It’s understandable because the likes of Google and Amazon are not so privacy focussed, but the fact remains that the HomePod is not smart. It is a brilliant speaker, of that there is no doubt, but I suspect not enough people want just a ‘speaker’.