Tim Cook says hardware, software integration puts HomePod ahead of competition

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  • Reply 81 of 121
    blah64blah64 Posts: 928member
    An Apple employee who worked on HomePod tweeted that anyone who wants good sound with no surveillance should get a HomePod. Really? So that’s going to be Apple’s marking plan? I’ll keep my Bose Soundlink Mini which has great sound and doesn’t need to be continuously connected to power.
    Good sound without surveillance sounds like a decent marketing plan as long as it adds at least some level of convenience over traditional speakers.  Traditional speakers can't be easily moved around the house or placed anywhere without dragging other crap (amps/receivers) along as well, but a HomePod can be readily moved or placed in small spaces.

    No small tabletop speaker is going to sound as good as large, standalone stereo speakers, but if HomePod does indeed provide good sound and allows simple OFFLINE assistance, such as timers, reminders and verbal control of music via a home server, it would be of great interest to me. Would it be of interest to you?
  • Reply 82 of 121
    AppleZulu said:
    zoetmb said:
    And with all these devices, I don't know how we perceive going back over 60 years to mono sound systems is perceived as "optimized for music" unless one wants to argue that the largely crappy new music released today, largely created within ProTools, doesn't need stereo.
    Common misunderstanding with the HomePod. It's not a mono device. The high/mid range will be reproduced in stereo due to the seven tweeters, while the low end will not (only one woofer). That's not a big deal for a mass market product like the HomePod. Most stereo effects do reside in the high/mid range, so although there is technically a difference with only one woofer, the non-audiophile is going to be hard pressed to find much of a difference with "true" stereo.
    That's what Apple is doing, but the reality is that it doesn't actually work very well.

    For stereo to sound even remotely natural to human ears there needs to be physical distance between the sources. This can be simulated with phase effects, but they don't sound particularly natural. It also gets a little weird as the listener moves around. That's fine on a laptop where the listener tends to stay pretty much dead centre, but may be an issue for a home speaker since the listener probably isn't going to stay in one spot.

    Still, while those things may be bothersome to people for whom listening is a more serious experience, they probably won't be a problem for most people. A tiny little speaker isn't going to sound like real life anyway. The novelty of the effect may actually be perceived as a positive.
    With the possible exception of binaural recordings played through headphones directly into the listener's ears, stereo is itself an artificial, simulated construct. When you hear actual sounds in your environment, they are not generally emanating from two points in front of you, a few feet apart. So even with a great recording playing through two high-end speakers set a number of feet apart, you are still creating a simulated sound field. I suppose if you're playing a recording that was made of two close-miked instruments and playback is completely separated to the two channels, you could reasonably reproduce the effect of each of those performers standing in the room exactly where the speakers are. Otherwise, stereo is itself a simulation, attempting to emulate a left-to-right soundstage with different things "placed" across it. From a physics and audio engineering standpoint, there's plenty of hinkiness involved in that process. Likewise in multi-channel surround sound setups, which simulate sound fields all around you. Dolby Atmos apparently opens up vertical simulation as well.

    So all that's to say, the proof will be in the computational pudding, but the HomePod's seven tweeter array is no more of an artificial construct than is two big JBLs in each corner of your den. There are no doubt limitations to create stereo separation from the HomePod's arrangement, but I'm curious to hear how well they do with it.
    Fair enough. I don't disagree with anything you wrote. None of our comments are contradictory. I agree that physical separation isn't enough on its own to create a realistic soundstage, but it's still a prerequisite. If even separating speakers with physical distance fails to accurately capture a realistic sense of space, doing so from a single point is an even more daunting task.

    I think it'd be one HELL of a party trick to create a realistic stereo image from a single point source! What Apple creates with psychoacoustics may sound very interesting and unlike other, similar products, but I'm skeptical that any kind of realistic sense of space can be achieved from a single source. As Bose discovered in the 1970s, trying to use reflections within the listening space to recreate the space a recording is supposed to represent doesn't work. It can sound cool and may sell speakers, but it's actually LESS "stereo" than a pair of tight-pattern speakers positioned properly in a non-reflective space.
  • Reply 83 of 121
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    JWSC said:

    Interesting reading.  A lot of misunderstanding and misplaced assumptions about this product even among AI readers.  A lot of this is driven by the fact that Apple is still holding some of the HomePod’s key capabilities close to the vest.

    My own perhaps flawed assumption is that the HomePod is designed to be a fully capable 7.1 surround sound system in a single device (7 tweeters and a subwoofer can’t be a coincidence).  If it is able to project different channels to different parts of a room then there is no need for a second HomePod, despite misplaced yearnings for one to deliver ‘stereo’ throughout a room.

    This 7.1 capability may not be ready for prime time yet.  But a firmware update might bring on a revolution in speaker design that will emit shock waves (pun intended) industry wide.

    Yes, many people here talk of stereo as an holy grail, stereo is very poor at reflecting the reality of a source.
    What I think they want to do is actually also to have speakers share their info about room acoustic between each others!!
    With that you could produce so incredible soundscape throughout and environment.
    If it can adjust the sound to the location of the listener in the house (which I don't doubt it will do eventually), that will be even more powerful.

    Having substantial DSP processing in a relatively inexpensive speaker (more like speakers in this case) is something that doesn't exist and many can't put their heads around this.
    tmay
  • Reply 84 of 121
    Why doesn't Tim Cook realize that Wall Street is only interested in market share percentage in any market? The HomePod is going to sell in such low numbers compared to every other voice assistant, everyone will say the HomePod is a failure right from the start. All the news media is going to boast about is poor HomePod sales compared to every Echo device. That will surely send any potential Apple investors running to Amazon or Google. Although I'm only guessing at this point, but Apple won't allow the HomePod to work with streaming services such as Spotify, Pandora, or any others. Consumers won't get any choice except AppleMusic.
  • Reply 85 of 121
    Wonder if Cook realizes that Amazon's Echo and Google's Home are also products that demonstrate the integration of hardware / software, 
    I think Tim Cook is too busy righting social problems. Apple will have to fend for itself without Tim Cook at the helm.
  • Reply 86 of 121
    "Competition makes all of us better and I welcome it," Cook said. "(But) if you are both trying to license something and compete with your licensees, this is a difficult model and it remains to be seen if it can be successful or not."

    This quote tells us that Apple will license its Car OS and not build a car.
    License it to who? No automaker needs Apple here. They’re all alread doing their own thing (and probably way ahead of whatever Apple is doing).
    Disagree.  Almost every major auto manufacturer offers CarPlay & Android Auto, both of which are much better than anything the car guys offer.
    I’m not talking about infotainment, I’m talking about the software needed for autonomous/self driving vehicles. 
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 87 of 121
    Rayz2016 said:
    The product seems half-baked, features are not ready at launch which should be core.
    Having read this article, I don’t think it is half-baked. I’d say it’s light and fluffy on the outside, but a tad doughy in the middle. 

    I suspect that not many people are going to buy two, not straight off at least. 
    The HomePod definitely won't be a "one for every room" device like Amazon and Google have. Apple clearly doesn't have any interest in dominating the voice assistant market. That's just the way Apple is. Always happy with profitable table scraps.
  • Reply 88 of 121
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    zoetmb said:
    And with all these devices, I don't know how we perceive going back over 60 years to mono sound systems is perceived as "optimized for music" unless one wants to argue that the largely crappy new music released today, largely created within ProTools, doesn't need stereo.
    Common misunderstanding with the HomePod. It's not a mono device. The high/mid range will be reproduced in stereo due to the seven tweeters, while the low end will not (only one woofer). That's not a big deal for a mass market product like the HomePod. Most stereo effects do reside in the high/mid range, so although there is technically a difference with only one woofer, the non-audiophile is going to be hard pressed to find much of a difference with "true" stereo.
    That's what Apple is doing, but the reality is that it doesn't actually work very well.

    For stereo to sound even remotely natural to human ears there needs to be physical distance between the sources. This can be simulated with phase effects, but they don't sound particularly natural. It also gets a little weird as the listener moves around. That's fine on a laptop where the listener tends to stay pretty much dead centre, but may be an issue for a home speaker since the listener probably isn't going to stay in one spot.

    Still, while those things may be bothersome to people for whom listening is a more serious experience, they probably won't be a problem for most people. A tiny little speaker isn't going to sound like real life anyway. The novelty of the effect may actually be perceived as a positive.
    Stereo is just a mixdown, there is nothing "natural" about it at all; you're not hearing what someone there heard in any way shape or form.

    In fact, if the Homepod got a multi-channel source, it likely could be closer to a "natural" (still not natural) sound to many 2 speaker setups because of its many sources and beemforming.
    tmay
  • Reply 89 of 121
    blah64blah64 Posts: 928member
    AppleZulu said:

    Amazon and Google are selling cheap 'dots,' probably at a loss, just to get the things into your home, because the devices themselves aren't intended to generate profit. Alexa and Google assistants are designed to collect data on the user and sell it to others, making the user the product and revenue source for their business models. Siri works the other way around, making its services a reason to buy Apple hardware, which sells at a premium, because of higher quality and the fact that they're never pursuing the low margin cheapest price-point market.

    Some people will buy the HomePod for the superior sound quality, its integration into the Apple environment, and the greater level of data security built into HomeKit. The others will do just fine, until there's news of a significant hacking incident with the less secure products.
    To continue my point above,

    If the HomePod allows for basic features without requiring an outgoing internet link, is that of interest to people who care about not being "the product"?  Would it appeal to you?  Or are people really so inextricably wedded to convenience that they can't be bothered to pay attention to this anymore? 

    I'd jump on a product like this that did the basics and didn't essentially shut itself off for no good reason without internet access.  If the audio quality is as good as it's being made out to be.

  • Reply 90 of 121

    eightzero said:
    Dalrymple's take on the audio quality issue in interesting and insightful:

    http://www.loopinsight.com/2018/01/24/on-homepod-and-audio-quality/

    The comparison to iPod is apt, I think. My recollection is that I had the same reaction to the iPod as I am now having to HomePod: "Meh. Not for me." And iPod wasn't for me at the time. As the prices dropped, and it was a bit more refined, I did get a few. And I still have them. My last one was an iPod touch, that now sits proudly by the window, broadcasting a loop of windchime music into a cheapo BT lamp on the porch. Yes, I have a digial windchime.

    I have one of the last gen iPod nanos that my wife outfitted with a watchband. I remember looking at that and said, "hum. If only Apple could dress this up as an actual watch, they'd have something." Who knew.

    I am very much not the target consumer for HomePod, but I wasn't for iPod either. I recall all the fervor over removal of the headphone jack from the iPhone. The dongle and lightening earbuds I got with my iPhone 7 are unused in the original packaging. I'm not a broad music consumer, so $350 is not vale. To me. YMMV.

    As a shareholder, I hope there are consumers for this, but I have no evidence this is actually the case. 
    It seems quite a few are wondering who the target market is for this. Though I suppose it will sell several million just due to Apple’s brand cachet.
  • Reply 91 of 121
    foggyhill said:
    [...] Having substantial DSP processing in a relatively inexpensive speaker (more like speakers in this case) is something that doesn't exist and many can't put their heads around this.
    It may be that people can't get their heads around it, but there's another possible explanation: that we're failing to recognize the spectrum of users. At the bottom end, people don't care if it use adaptive psychoacoustics. In the middle, people are interested in and curious about what it might add to the listening experience. At the top you have sophisticated users who know that refections in the listening space are usually the enemy, and are skeptical about the likelihood of a DSP-driven multiple-driver array being truly beneficial.

    This debate won't go away even after we've all heard it, because some people will love the effect and others will hate it.

    In the end it all comes down to the same bottom line as with ANY speaker: listen to it and decide whether or not you like it.

    Also, always insist on a return policy when buying ANY speaker, because as foggyhill notes, it WILL sound different in your home than it does in the store. Apple is apparently trying to minimize that with this device, but even Apple can't repeal the laws of physics.

    ---

    Fun story about speakers: I once acted as shopping assistant for a music professor who wanted a new sound system at home. I told him to bring along a recording he knew very well.

    We whittled down the choices of speakers to two models. The professor noted that the less expensive pair actually sounded more realistic than the more expensive ones. The salesman was quick to point out that what sounds "pleasing" is not necessarily the most accurate (which is absolutely true). He told the professor that if he could hear the performance represented by that recording, he'd realize the more expensive speakers were actually more accurate.

    The professor leaned over to the table and flipped over the record cover, revealing a photo of him sitting at the organ we were hearing. The recording he had chosen was an album of him playing the tracker organ at the University of Iowa!

    The salesman excused himself and had the manager come in to write up the invoice for the less expensive set of speakers.
  • Reply 92 of 121
    tmaytmay Posts: 3,799member

    eightzero said:
    Dalrymple's take on the audio quality issue in interesting and insightful:

    http://www.loopinsight.com/2018/01/24/on-homepod-and-audio-quality/

    The comparison to iPod is apt, I think. My recollection is that I had the same reaction to the iPod as I am now having to HomePod: "Meh. Not for me." And iPod wasn't for me at the time. As the prices dropped, and it was a bit more refined, I did get a few. And I still have them. My last one was an iPod touch, that now sits proudly by the window, broadcasting a loop of windchime music into a cheapo BT lamp on the porch. Yes, I have a digial windchime.

    I have one of the last gen iPod nanos that my wife outfitted with a watchband. I remember looking at that and said, "hum. If only Apple could dress this up as an actual watch, they'd have something." Who knew.

    I am very much not the target consumer for HomePod, but I wasn't for iPod either. I recall all the fervor over removal of the headphone jack from the iPhone. The dongle and lightening earbuds I got with my iPhone 7 are unused in the original packaging. I'm not a broad music consumer, so $350 is not vale. To me. YMMV.

    As a shareholder, I hope there are consumers for this, but I have no evidence this is actually the case. 
    It seems quite a few are wondering who the target market is for this. Though I suppose it will sell several million just due to Apple’s brand cachet.
    Pretty much how most high end audio equipment is sold, brand cachet, earned at some point, same as Apple.
  • Reply 93 of 121
    foggyhill said:
    zoetmb said:
    And with all these devices, I don't know how we perceive going back over 60 years to mono sound systems is perceived as "optimized for music" unless one wants to argue that the largely crappy new music released today, largely created within ProTools, doesn't need stereo.
    Common misunderstanding with the HomePod. It's not a mono device. The high/mid range will be reproduced in stereo due to the seven tweeters, while the low end will not (only one woofer). That's not a big deal for a mass market product like the HomePod. Most stereo effects do reside in the high/mid range, so although there is technically a difference with only one woofer, the non-audiophile is going to be hard pressed to find much of a difference with "true" stereo.
    That's what Apple is doing, but the reality is that it doesn't actually work very well.

    For stereo to sound even remotely natural to human ears there needs to be physical distance between the sources. This can be simulated with phase effects, but they don't sound particularly natural. It also gets a little weird as the listener moves around. That's fine on a laptop where the listener tends to stay pretty much dead centre, but may be an issue for a home speaker since the listener probably isn't going to stay in one spot.

    Still, while those things may be bothersome to people for whom listening is a more serious experience, they probably won't be a problem for most people. A tiny little speaker isn't going to sound like real life anyway. The novelty of the effect may actually be perceived as a positive.
    Stereo is just a mixdown, there is nothing "natural" about it at all; you're not hearing what someone there heard in any way shape or form.

    In fact, if the Homepod got a multi-channel source, it likely could be closer to a "natural" (still not natural) sound to many 2 speaker setups because of its many sources and beemforming.
    While I'm no PhD., I have more than a passing familiarity with the physics and psychology of sound perception. As such, I understand the challenges a designer faces when trying to use transducers to compensate for room acoustics.

    Apple has told us very little about what they mean by "beam forming" so trying to draw any conclusion about the likelihood of it being effective is difficult. In fact, they haven't said much about what said beam forming is supposed to DO, so it's almost impossible to guess whether or not it will work, because we don't really know what it's trying to accomplish.

    It's great to be optimistic and hopeful, and even to give Apple credit for managing in the past to do well what others did not. It's not great to insist that observations about the science of sound are irrelevant "because DSP and beam forming will overcome that." Overcome WHAT? Comb filtering? Uneven frequency response? Poor stereo imaging? Distortions of various kinds? You don't know whether or not it will accomplish any of those ends. Neither do I. I *do* know that a century-and-a-half of studying how sound works and how people perceive it suggests that Apple faces a really serious uphill struggle if the goal is to make a little self-contained speaker compete with even a modest traditional stereo system.
    JWSC
  • Reply 94 of 121
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    foggyhill said:
    zoetmb said:
    And with all these devices, I don't know how we perceive going back over 60 years to mono sound systems is perceived as "optimized for music" unless one wants to argue that the largely crappy new music released today, largely created within ProTools, doesn't need stereo.
    Common misunderstanding with the HomePod. It's not a mono device. The high/mid range will be reproduced in stereo due to the seven tweeters, while the low end will not (only one woofer). That's not a big deal for a mass market product like the HomePod. Most stereo effects do reside in the high/mid range, so although there is technically a difference with only one woofer, the non-audiophile is going to be hard pressed to find much of a difference with "true" stereo.
    That's what Apple is doing, but the reality is that it doesn't actually work very well.

    For stereo to sound even remotely natural to human ears there needs to be physical distance between the sources. This can be simulated with phase effects, but they don't sound particularly natural. It also gets a little weird as the listener moves around. That's fine on a laptop where the listener tends to stay pretty much dead centre, but may be an issue for a home speaker since the listener probably isn't going to stay in one spot.

    Still, while those things may be bothersome to people for whom listening is a more serious experience, they probably won't be a problem for most people. A tiny little speaker isn't going to sound like real life anyway. The novelty of the effect may actually be perceived as a positive.
    Stereo is just a mixdown, there is nothing "natural" about it at all; you're not hearing what someone there heard in any way shape or form.

    In fact, if the Homepod got a multi-channel source, it likely could be closer to a "natural" (still not natural) sound to many 2 speaker setups because of its many sources and beemforming.
    While I'm no PhD., I have more than a passing familiarity with the physics and psychology of sound perception. As such, I understand the challenges a designer faces when trying to use transducers to compensate for room acoustics.

    Apple has told us very little about what they mean by "beam forming" so trying to draw any conclusion about the likelihood of it being effective is difficult. In fact, they haven't said much about what said beam forming is supposed to DO, so it's almost impossible to guess whether or not it will work, because we don't really know what it's trying to accomplish.

    It's great to be optimistic and hopeful, and even to give Apple credit for managing in the past to do well what others did not. It's not great to insist that observations about the science of sound are irrelevant "because DSP and beam forming will overcome that." Overcome WHAT? Comb filtering? Uneven frequency response? Poor stereo imaging? Distortions of various kinds? You don't know whether or not it will accomplish any of those ends. Neither do I. I *do* know that a century-and-a-half of studying how sound works and how people perceive it suggests that Apple faces a really serious uphill struggle if the goal is to make a little self-contained speaker compete with even a modest traditional stereo system.
    I spent 1.5 years in engineering physics before switching to computer engineering so I'm pretty sure I've got a grasp of basic physics (but probably not the most advanced material physics, there is a reason I switched). But, the physics of waves, I'm not an expert but understand it pretty well.

    It does not have a serious uphill battle because traditional stereo systems have failed so much especially in real world use, and I was a buyer of those systems (not high end, but pretty high end, the equivalent to buying a $3000 stereo sound setup these days).

    I'm relying on what people have said about hearing them and what Apple tells me. WTH are you relying on. If anything, you seem to be the one trash talking without cause.

    One thing you conveniently occult is that this amount of processing that could be put in a small speaker did not exist until the last few years.
    The same reason computational photography is available now to do some fantastic thing is the same reason this can finally be applied to audio.

    Using room acoustic and doing live modifications could simply not be done before in any affordable way before now so this appeal to past failures is just weird.



    JWSC
  • Reply 95 of 121
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,895member
    Why doesn't Tim Cook realize that Wall Street is only interested in market share percentage in any market? The HomePod is going to sell in such low numbers compared to every other voice assistant, everyone will say the HomePod is a failure right from the start. All the news media is going to boast about is poor HomePod sales compared to every Echo device. That will surely send any potential Apple investors running to Amazon or Google. Although I'm only guessing at this point, but Apple won't allow the HomePod to work with streaming services such as Spotify, Pandora, or any others. Consumers won't get any choice except AppleMusic.
    The day Apple does something just to please its stock market price (shareholders) is the day Apple dies. I'm sorry, but Apple should never sit and worry what Wall Street will think of a product. Apple shouldn't really care about its stock price. If you do good work the stock price will take care of itself. 

    But we get it...you don't like Tim Cook. 
    edited January 2018
  • Reply 96 of 121
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,715member
    blah64 said:
    An Apple employee who worked on HomePod tweeted that anyone who wants good sound with no surveillance should get a HomePod. Really? So that’s going to be Apple’s marking plan? I’ll keep my Bose Soundlink Mini which has great sound and doesn’t need to be continuously connected to power.
    Good sound without surveillance sounds like a decent marketing plan as long as it adds at least some level of convenience over traditional speakers.  Traditional speakers can't be easily moved around the house or placed anywhere without dragging other crap (amps/receivers) along as well, but a HomePod can be readily moved or placed in small spaces.

    No small tabletop speaker is going to sound as good as large, standalone stereo speakers, but if HomePod does indeed provide good sound and allows simple OFFLINE assistance, such as timers, reminders and verbal control of music via a home server, it would be of great interest to me. Would it be of interest to you?
    Is the Siri assistance with reminders and such going to be OFFLINE? I was under the impression that all Siri requests were funneled thru Apple's servers for processing. Am I mistaken and Siri now does all the request processing on device, no online connection needed?
  • Reply 97 of 121
    Why doesn't Tim Cook realize that Wall Street is only interested in market share percentage in any market? The HomePod is going to sell in such low numbers compared to every other voice assistant, everyone will say the HomePod is a failure right from the start. All the news media is going to boast about is poor HomePod sales compared to every Echo device. That will surely send any potential Apple investors running to Amazon or Google. Although I'm only guessing at this point, but Apple won't allow the HomePod to work with streaming services such as Spotify, Pandora, or any others. Consumers won't get any choice except AppleMusic.
    That's just nonsense. Apple has never been concerned with market share. Never. In this business, chasing market share means building cheap products and selling lots of them at slim margins (or, often at a loss). Apple doesn't do that, and they never have. They are always happy to let their competitors do that, because it's a recipe for making inferior products and not a lot of money. Apple has always made higher quality products that capture smaller market share, but sell at a bigger profit. That's why they have more money than anyone else. This has always been their business model.

    If Apple ever starts chasing market share, that's when you should sell your Apple stock.
    tmay
  • Reply 98 of 121

    blah64 said:
    AppleZulu said:

    Amazon and Google are selling cheap 'dots,' probably at a loss, just to get the things into your home, because the devices themselves aren't intended to generate profit. Alexa and Google assistants are designed to collect data on the user and sell it to others, making the user the product and revenue source for their business models. Siri works the other way around, making its services a reason to buy Apple hardware, which sells at a premium, because of higher quality and the fact that they're never pursuing the low margin cheapest price-point market.

    Some people will buy the HomePod for the superior sound quality, its integration into the Apple environment, and the greater level of data security built into HomeKit. The others will do just fine, until there's news of a significant hacking incident with the less secure products.
    To continue my point above,

    If the HomePod allows for basic features without requiring an outgoing internet link, is that of interest to people who care about not being "the product"?  Would it appeal to you?  Or are people really so inextricably wedded to convenience that they can't be bothered to pay attention to this anymore? 

    I'd jump on a product like this that did the basics and didn't essentially shut itself off for no good reason without internet access.  If the audio quality is as good as it's being made out to be.

    You can play an iTunes library through the HomePod, which means if not being connected to the internet is what floats your boat, you're all set. Once they issue Airplay 2, you'll be able to send whatever you want to it that's Airplay 2 compatible.
  • Reply 99 of 121
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,950member
    AppleZulu said:

    blah64 said:
    AppleZulu said:

    Amazon and Google are selling cheap 'dots,' probably at a loss, just to get the things into your home, because the devices themselves aren't intended to generate profit. Alexa and Google assistants are designed to collect data on the user and sell it to others, making the user the product and revenue source for their business models. Siri works the other way around, making its services a reason to buy Apple hardware, which sells at a premium, because of higher quality and the fact that they're never pursuing the low margin cheapest price-point market.

    Some people will buy the HomePod for the superior sound quality, its integration into the Apple environment, and the greater level of data security built into HomeKit. The others will do just fine, until there's news of a significant hacking incident with the less secure products.
    To continue my point above,

    If the HomePod allows for basic features without requiring an outgoing internet link, is that of interest to people who care about not being "the product"?  Would it appeal to you?  Or are people really so inextricably wedded to convenience that they can't be bothered to pay attention to this anymore? 

    I'd jump on a product like this that did the basics and didn't essentially shut itself off for no good reason without internet access.  If the audio quality is as good as it's being made out to be.

    You can play an iTunes library through the HomePod, which means if not being connected to the internet is what floats your boat, you're all set. Once they issue Airplay 2, you'll be able to send whatever you want to it that's Airplay 2 compatible.
    And you'll be able to do all this with a localized version of Siri that only talks to your iTunes Library and processes everything on the HomePod's A-series chip?
  • Reply 100 of 121
    I'll believe cook when it happens.  I want apple's speaker to be better but instead believe Apple will lock it down and have no Spotify, pandora or similar third party application control.   Also it really is up in the air to verbally control an Apple TV and those applications, which can be video, even vudu or Amazon etc.   I want a full living room system, with privacy which google and Amazon doesn't have 
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