“The Google Home Max is the best smart speaker I’ve heard,” Michael Brown writes for TechHive. “Amazon certainly has nothing close to it in terms of audio performance, and neither do any of the manufacturers building Echo clones. Expectations for Apple’s upcoming HomePod are certainly high, but compared to many other comparably sized, self-powered multi-room speakers—the second-generation Sonos Play:5 being the perfect example—the Google Home Max isn’t as remarkable.”

“When I performed an A/B comparison to the aforementioned Sonos Play:5, the Max was outclassed at both ends of the frequency spectrum,” Brown writes. “Compared to the Sonos One—the only true smart speaker in Sonos’ stable—or any other smart speaker, for that matter, the Max is a sonic superstar. If I didn’t have the Play:5 to compare it to, I’d have little or no criticism of the Max’s musical performance—especially for the price tag, which is $100 lower than that of Sonos’ flagship speaker.”

“We’ll have to wait a few weeks to see if Apple’s HomePod can knock the Google Home Max off its sonic perch, but we already know that that speaker won’t support multi-room audio—at least not right out of the box,” Brown writes. “Based on what can be evaluated today, the Google Home Max is the best-sounding smart speaker on the market.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Why is the headline statement of this review possible? Because Apple is woefully late to market.

Google Home Max is the best-sounding smart speaker you can buy. — TechHive

Here’s yet another important impression that Apple’s inexplicable ineptitude has handed to the competition on a silver platter.

And now Apple’s going to try to sell HomePod based on sound quality (because Siri was mismanaged and neglected for years and is now too stupid and less capable – in public perception, at the very least – to compete against its own knockoffs).

Good luck, Phil!

Tim Cook says audio quality puts HomePod ahead of ‘squeaky-sounding’ competition – January 24, 2018
Apple to ship crippled, incomplete HomePod months late – January 23, 2018
Apple’s HomePod arrives February 9th, available to order this Friday, January 26th – January 23, 2018
Apple CEO Tim Cook paid close to $102 million for fiscal 2017 – December 28, 2017
Apple’s Phil Schiller: We feel bad about the HomePod delay – December 8, 2017
Echo Dot was Amazon’s Black Friday – Cyber Monday bestseller as Apple’s delayed HomePod waits for 2018 release date – November 28, 2017
Apple’s late, delayed, limited HomePod is looking more and more like something I don’t want – November 27, 2017
Why Apple’s HomePod is three years behind Amazon’s Echo – November 21, 2017
Under ‘operations genius’ Tim Cook, product delays and other problems are no longer unusual for Apple – November 20, 2017
Apple delays HomePod release to early 2018 – November 17, 2017
Apple CEO Tim Cook: The ‘operations genius’ who never has enough products to sell at launch – October 23, 2017
Apple reveals HomePod smart home music speaker – June 5, 2017
Apple’s desperate Mac Pro damage control message hints at a confused, divided company – April 6, 2017
Apple is misplaying the hand Steve Jobs left them – November 30, 2016
Apple delays AirPod rollout – October 26, 2016
Apple delays release of watchOS 2 due to bug – September 16, 2015
Apple delays HomeKit launch until autumn – May 14, 2015
Apple delays production of 12.9-inch ‘iPad Pro’ in face of overwhelming iPhone 6/Plus demand – October 9, 2014
Tim Cook’s mea culpa: iMac launch should have been postponed – April 24, 2013