HomePod, the innovative wireless speaker from Apple, arrives in stores beginning Friday, February 9 and is available to order online this Friday, January 26 in the US, UK and Australia. HomePod will arrive in France and Germany this spring.
The $349 speaker is powered by Apple Music and comes with Siri and HomeKit support. The HomePod supports SiriKit, so select third-party apps will be supported by the speaker.
Multi-room audio via AirPlay 2 will come in a software update “this year.” There’s something clearly going on with AirPlay 2, and Apple decided to ditch at least some of its features for now to get this product out. This means stereo mode, where two HomePods can be played in the same room for a fuller sound, will not be supported at launch.
As a diehard Amazon Echo user, I wasn’t particularly jazzed about the HomePod when it was introduced at WWDC last year, but I’ve since switched to Apple Music. I think I’m going to order one to at least take it for a spin.