“As a testament to Apple’s place in the pantheon of electronics, reviews for a new product from Cupertino come fast and — often — furious. HomePod, Apple’s contribution to the ‘smart speaker’ genre, exacerbates the venomenon, pardon, phenomenon,” Jean-Louis Gassée writes for Monday Note. “Tempting as it is to call out reviewers’ contradictions, ignorance of basics, and reflexive opinions passed as authoritative facts, one might try a more empathetic view of the basic challenges in evaluating speakers, including the not-so-new computational audio category now entering the consumer space.”

“With its HomePod speaker, Apple has once again reshuffled existing genres,” Gassée writes. “As an almost singular representative of the new consumer computational audio devices, HomePod’s slippery algorithms defeat quick and easy reviews.”

“This is where we find a new type of difficulty when evaluating this new breed of smart speakers,” Gassée writes, “and why we must be kind to the early HomePod reviewers: The technical complexity and environmental subjectivity leads to contradictory statements and inconsistent results.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: It will take reviewers quite some time to adapt because:

Apple has redefined stereo… About “stereo,” it’s time to Think Different. — MacDailyNews, February 13, 2018

Steve Crandall: Apple’s HomePod is the next big step in home audio – February 13, 2018
Apple HomePod: The audiophile perspective plus 8 1/2 hours of measurements; HomePod is 100% an audiophile-grade speaker – February 12, 2018
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Digital Trends previews Apple’s HomePod: Impressive sound coupled with strong privacy – January 26, 2018
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Apple’s HomePod, the iPod for your home – January 25, 2018
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Tim Cook says audio quality puts HomePod ahead of ‘squeaky-sounding’ competition – January 24, 2018
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