Apple has discontinued its original HomePod after four years, TechCrunch reports. The company says that it will continue to produce and focus on the HomePod mini, introduced last year.
Matthew Panzarino for TechCrunch:
The larger HomePod offered a beefier sound space but the mini has been very well received and clearly accomplishes many of the duties that the larger version was tasked with. The sound is super solid (especially for the size) and it offers access to Siri, Apple’s assistant feature.
The original HomePod was a feat of audio engineering that Apple spent over five years developing… I found it to be one of the best speakers ever made for the home when I reviewed it in 2018. From the booming base and well-shaped nature of the tweeter assembly inside; the cloth cover that was specially shaped to avoid interfering with sound quality in any way; the way that it sensed the way that audio was being shaped by walls and other obstructions and adjusted its output to compensate. It was the definition of ‘no effort spared’ in the speaker department.
Apple gave TechCrunch a statement about the discontinuation:
HomePod mini has been a hit since its debut last fall, offering customers amazing sound, an intelligent assistant, and smart home control all for just $99. We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini. We are discontinuing the original HomePod, it will continue to be available while supplies last through the Apple Online Store, Apple Retail Stores, and Apple Authorized Resellers. Apple will provide HomePod customers with software updates and service and support through Apple Care.
MacDailyNews Take: We’re happy we have our HomePods, for sure. Get ’em while they last!
So much for home theater implementations.
There’s always Bluesound
It does Airplay AND Roon.
I am kinda ticked as they sound better than the mini. I have one home pod for the house (living room) and a mini for the bedroom and a mini at the cottage. When you put two mini’s together in stereo, they sound really good vs alone. I hesitated to get a second home pod because of the cost and to just have it as a dummy to the first, making it wasteful. I guess I will get a second mini as a dummy and bring the better single home pod to the cottage.
First world problems I guess.
In other words, when the $99 one appeared, sales of the $299 one dropped like a rock.
Unfortunate…pretty nice sound, but lack of versatility (imo) handicapped the fairly high price.
This should be an arena Apple should/could fortify the ecosystem and crush competition…with A-TV, Music and longstanding focus/ethos. Disappointing and befuddling corporate decisions re: the product…not the discontinuation. It was terminally bound.
Apple missed with its earlier device (iPod HiFi) that was pretty nice as well.
Over a year after having bought one on sale ($200) I’m still not convinced, it’s probably the most lackluster Apple product that I have. All I wanted it to be was a Mac speaker, but the audio delay for videos and just general tasks (better now, but still irritating) means that it’s mostly used to ask Siri about the weather. A few times I’ve handed off audiobooks and music to it, which is fine when it works, but you never know from one app update to another what will get broken. Has anyone been able to successfully use this as a Mac speaker? Even the clicks of the volume being changed is delayed, the experience is better from my Macbook Pro speakers in clamshell mode. Setting the Homepod as the output speaker even seems to create typing lag.
Yes, this times x 1,000,000,000,000
“On the whole, the HomePod did a good job in being what it set out to be — but it was never destined to be the world’s best-selling smart speaker. Not at that price. What it did do, however, was help convince the rest of the industry that a smart speaker should be, above all, a speaker, rather than simply a smart assistant delivery device”, TechCrunch
And Apple, do you really have to do this? It’s a shame.
As a bipolar artist, I was always torn between the two HomePods. Both felt like home. Both were peas in a pod. I will give strong consideration to painting a tribute to the ‘Pods as an ongoing tribute to American greatness to shut that critic up of mine who complains I am anti Western civilization. Nothing could be further from the truth, I am just anti-Retrumplican, which is why I live, paint, create and pay taxes in LA.
So, you are against the historical first time politician first time running won the presidency and beat the Clinton juggernaut with record campaign spending over a billion dollars. Endorsed by 95%+ of the newspaper editorials and darling of the lamestream liberal media. Then went on to set several all time government records in economic recovery in three years and no recognition of remarkable President Trump.
Thank God dumbass clueless so called progressives like yourself are out of the mainstream and not running anything except your mouth…
Intentionally crippled product to add yet another lock in the door. Pity. Good riddance.
You’d be smarter as an Apple critic, but no, you have to be a cynic.
Have to tell you brother… You can’t have one without the other…
“Intentionally crippled.” Like our fake puppet president.
Yes, they are eliminating the HomePod, which was rightly criticized for being insufficiently open to streaming services and auxiliary inputs. But they’re doing so in order to focus on the HomePod mini, which has exactly the same limitations.
I wanted a HomePod. Without an aux connector, or the ability to play media from a flash/SD drive, etc. kept me from it. If they would have made it a little more open, I would have bought one, or two. Instead I bought zero.
Another reason to never buy a 1.0 product.
Any why do you need iOS to configure it? Users with a Mac Pro, nice iMac or even a MacBook who do not have a iOS device, are blocked from using it.
Kind of like how the external Superdrive can only be use by Mac’s without a built in DVD-ROM drive. “The Apple USB SuperDrive is compatible with Mac models from 2008 and later that don’t have a built-in optical drive.” WTF.
Sad for smart home audiophiles but not surprising since the HomePod mini’s release.
Now Apple, if your trying to restart your HomeKit line, introduce a new HomePod model (mini) with built in mesh networking. I’d like to see an Apple HomeKit router / HomePod combo of the same size and design. There are multiple use cases here.
The mini’s have Thread built in. Therefore they can act as Thread routers
I’m glad I purchased my Stereo Pair – on the first day of availability – even knowing that the capability to pair then in a stereo arrangement would be delayed upon launch.
They are everything Apple said they would be and will remain a treasured asset long after the HomePod Mini is a forgotten accessory.
Hello 👋 there give me a message
Well I just went online to order one because I love the one I have, and the thought of never being able to pair it was just too much to bear!
Just did it myself. Arriving today…….
Really hope there’s a massive overstock of these that will eventually find their way to my local Costco on clearance. I’d love to grab a couple of these for a decent price.
Apple continues to un-Johnny Ives the product line. Tim Cook was smart to push him out. AirPod Max still confuses me. I think next year they will be cut or much less in cost. I assume too far along in development. Release it then fix it.
I’ve decided to discontinue my personal paintbrush. I don’t need it anymore, which is why I’m becoming a woman and using a Mac to paint myself. Apologies for being bipolar.