“The Apple HomePod arrives in stores this Friday, February 9,” David Phelan reports for Forbes. “I’ve talked in depth to several senior Apple execs to get the skinny on what was behind the HomePod.”

“Something that’s only come to light recently is how long Apple has been working on it smart hi-fi speaker – more than six years, it seems,” Phelan reports. “Apple has its own audio labs, working on everything from telephony radio to microphones and beyond.”

MacDailyNews Take: So, to be clear, the issues – namely the inexplicable lack of multi-room audio and stereo pairing at launch, among other things – are the fault of the software team (iOS), not the HomePod hardware team. Of course the software teams at Apple are quite busy putting out many fires of their own making, so… Hopefully, they’re finally getting their act together.

Apple's all-new HomePod

Apple’s all-new HomePod

“Pick it up and you notice two things. It’s a pleasing, tactile experience thanks to the soft-touch mesh which covers it. And it’s heavy. It weighs 5.5lbs (2.5kg) which is more than you expect, again because that acoustically transparent mesh gives the HomePod an appearance that’s almost delicate, especially in the white finish,” Phelan reports. “In fact, it’s pretty robust. The weight is reassuring, and a lot of it is down to the woofer which sits in the middle.”

MacDailyNews Take: You may have heard someone say, “that speaker is too light to be any good.” It’s very true.

“It’s performing smart analysis of the music as you play it. Non-stop,” Phelan reports. “The HomePod analyzes music on the fly to work out what’s the main vocal, what’s background noise and so on. It then puts the background noise into the tweeters facing the wall and pumps the main sound directly out to the room. This continuous analysis happens because there’s a powerful processor in the HomePod, the Apple A8 chip.”

Much more in the full article – recommended – here.

MacDailyNews Take: Come on, Friday!

TechCrunch reviews Apple’s HomePod: Easily the best sounding mainstream smart speaker ever – February 6, 2018
WSJ reviews Apple’s HomePod: Sounds far better than the popular smart speakers from Amazon, Google, and Sonos – February 6, 2018
CNET reviews Apple’s HomePod: Strong wireless speaker with awesome sound – February 6, 2018