Apple shares tutorial video explaining 'how to get the most' from HomePod

Posted:
in General Discussion edited February 16
Continuing a recent surge in HomePod-related tutorial videos, Apple on Friday posted a fresh explainer to its official YouTube support channel covering general device features, from music playback to Siri commands.




Titled "How to get the most from HomePod," Apple's latest mini lesson runs over three minutes long and goes over a series of basic HomePod functions including Personal Requests, talking to Siri and controlling smart home accessories.

Starting with music, Apple notes Siri on HomePod can be tasked to play specific songs, tracks by artist, user playlists or genres. Leaning on Apple Music curation, the device can also create specialized playlists tailored to a particular activity or mood. Users can also turn to their iPhone to take control of HomePod playback, Apple says.

Moving on to phone calls, the company shows users how to use HomePod as a speaker phone. Simply accept or place a call, tap on the audio button and select HomePod from the list of available devices. Tapping on HomePod's touch panel -- which pulses green during a call -- ends the conversation.

Apple also touches on Personal Requests, or the accessing of data that users may deem sensitive. When connected to the same Wi-Fi network as a paired iPhone, and with Personal Requests enabled, Siri on HomePod can send and receive messages, add reminders a create notes. For those who want to keep their correspondence private, there is a way to disable Personal Requests using the Home app.

The video goes on to detail methods of conducting basic internet queries and controlling smart home accessories like connected lights.





Today's tutorial follows a slate of three HomePod how-to videos published on Saturday. Following the same format, Apple went over music playback, physical touch controls and adjusting HomePod settings using the Home app in iOS.

If you just purchased a HomePod, make sure to check out AppleInsider's collection of HomePod tips, where we delve deep into the smart speaker's capabilities.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20
    Having used HomePod for a week now, Siri is definitely it’s weakest link, it’s not as accurate as the iPhone, it’s lacking some key functionality, such as play my audio book. The sound is fantastic so I can only hope Siri gets better and it develops further with firmware updates.
  • Reply 2 of 20
    Siri fuck*ng sucks. I’m fed up. The HomePod wasn’t able to play a playlist that was on Apple Music and my phone, no matter how many times I tried to phrase it (as I mentioned in a recent post). 

    Now, I just tried telling Siri, “play my new music mix starting with the song Commit” (that was the next song on the playlist that I had just been listening to on my phone, so trying to switch over where I left off on HomePod). Siri’s response, “now playing playlist fire fire.” I have never listened to any playlist with the word fire in it, let alone a playlist called “fire fire”.

    It’s getting depressing how bad Siri is, and the implications of Siri’s failure to do basic tasks after over 6 years in development...

    I have never ever been a hand-wringer when it comes to Apple. Not when Steve died. Not when Tim was being dumped on at every turn. But for Apple to keep failing so miserably at the cornerstone of their ecosystem (if not now, Siri will be, inevitably) is beyond frustrating. 
    edited February 16 deepinsiderzroger732stepbayCesar Battistini MazieroSendMcjak
  • Reply 3 of 20
    Siri fuck*ng sucks. I’m fed up. The HomePod wasn’t able to play a playlist that was on Apple Music and my phone, no matter how many times I tried to phrase it (as I mentioned in a recent post). 

    Now, I just tried telling Siri, “play my new music mix starting with the song Commit” (that was the next song on the playlist that I had just been listening to on my phone, so trying to switch over where I left off on HomePod). Siri’s response, “now playing playlist fire fire.” I have never listened to any playlist with the word fire in it, let alone a playlist called “fire fire”.

    It’s getting depressing how bad Siri is, and the implications of Siri’s failure to do basic tasks after over 6 years in development...

    I have never ever been a hand-wringer when it comes to Apple. Not when Steve died. Not when Tim was being dumped on at every turn. But for Apple to keep failing so miserably at the cornerstone of their ecosystem (if not now, Siri will be, inevitably) is beyond frustrating. 
    It's just that the sound command isn't reliable or consistent enough and this has nothing to do with Siri. It happens to every platforms. Sometimes you have stellar result with Siri, then a few days later same command just failed.
    We're in early stage of this assistant thing. No one can be as reliable & consistent without fail yet, unlike other input methods that we have come to trust.

    https://twitter.com/mattcassinelli/status/964584773325746177
    edited February 17
  • Reply 4 of 20
    I, too, find the sound quality to be excellent. While Siri hears me very well, it doesn't listen very well and frequently misidentifies what I'm asking for unless I speak unnaturally slowly and distinctly - especially when music is playing. Alexa, on the other hand, can't hear me as well as Siri - especially when music is playing, but she listens very well - even when I'm mumbling.
  • Reply 5 of 20
    Siri fuck*ng sucks. I’m fed up. The HomePod wasn’t able to play a playlist that was on Apple Music and my phone, no matter how many times I tried to phrase it (as I mentioned in a recent post). 

    Now, I just tried telling Siri, “play my new music mix starting with the song Commit” (that was the next song on the playlist that I had just been listening to on my phone, so trying to switch over where I left off on HomePod). Siri’s response, “now playing playlist fire fire.” I have never listened to any playlist with the word fire in it, let alone a playlist called “fire fire”.

    It’s getting depressing how bad Siri is, and the implications of Siri’s failure to do basic tasks after over 6 years in development...

    I have never ever been a hand-wringer when it comes to Apple. Not when Steve died. Not when Tim was being dumped on at every turn. But for Apple to keep failing so miserably at the cornerstone of their ecosystem (if not now, Siri will be, inevitably) is beyond frustrating. 
    Yep...also Siri via CarPlay is beyond bad. Same screw ups when asking for various playlists.
  • Reply 6 of 20
    2stepbay said:
    Siri fuck*ng sucks. I’m fed up. The HomePod wasn’t able to play a playlist that was on Apple Music and my phone, no matter how many times I tried to phrase it (as I mentioned in a recent post). 

    Now, I just tried telling Siri, “play my new music mix starting with the song Commit” (that was the next song on the playlist that I had just been listening to on my phone, so trying to switch over where I left off on HomePod). Siri’s response, “now playing playlist fire fire.” I have never listened to any playlist with the word fire in it, let alone a playlist called “fire fire”.

    It’s getting depressing how bad Siri is, and the implications of Siri’s failure to do basic tasks after over 6 years in development...

    I have never ever been a hand-wringer when it comes to Apple. Not when Steve died. Not when Tim was being dumped on at every turn. But for Apple to keep failing so miserably at the cornerstone of their ecosystem (if not now, Siri will be, inevitably) is beyond frustrating. 
    Yep...also Siri via CarPlay is beyond bad. Same screw ups when asking for various playlists.
    My wife’s iPhone is plugged in and we’re using CarPlay right now. She has a few playlist, some Smart Playlists and others she just threw together. I tried 3 of hers in a row and had no issues with the exception of the first time. The first one I tried is “Matt”. I invoked Siri and said, “Playlist Matt” and got an error type response. So I tried, “Play playlist Matt” and it worked immediately. After that I tried two other playlists using the same phrasing and they both worked. Then I tried “Play my Matt playlist” and that worked as well. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 20
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,534member
    Siri fuck*ng sucks. I’m fed up. The HomePod wasn’t able to play a playlist that was on Apple Music and my phone, no matter how many times I tried to phrase it (as I mentioned in a recent post). 

    Now, I just tried telling Siri, “play my new music mix starting with the song Commit” (that was the next song on the playlist that I had just been listening to on my phone, so trying to switch over where I left off on HomePod). Siri’s response, “now playing playlist fire fire.” I have never listened to any playlist with the word fire in it, let alone a playlist called “fire fire”.

    It’s getting depressing how bad Siri is, and the implications of Siri’s failure to do basic tasks after over 6 years in development...

    I have never ever been a hand-wringer when it comes to Apple. Not when Steve died. Not when Tim was being dumped on at every turn. But for Apple to keep failing so miserably at the cornerstone of their ecosystem (if not now, Siri will be, inevitably) is beyond frustrating. 
    I am not a Siri fan. It is very spotty. Sometimes it works great, other times just terrible. The idea with CarPlay was that it will keep your eyes on the road, but I'd argue that it is less distracting to text while driving than to try and get Siri to do the right thing when she is in in a bad mood. Texting using Siri is close to impossible. The response delay means it rarely works first time, and if you hesitate for a split second during the message it is all over and you have to start again. Using the iPhone in the car for me is a 'set it before you start to roll, and turn it off when you stop' deal.
  • Reply 8 of 20
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,581member
    paxman said:
    Siri fuck*ng sucks. I’m fed up. The HomePod wasn’t able to play a playlist that was on Apple Music and my phone, no matter how many times I tried to phrase it (as I mentioned in a recent post). 

    Now, I just tried telling Siri, “play my new music mix starting with the song Commit” (that was the next song on the playlist that I had just been listening to on my phone, so trying to switch over where I left off on HomePod). Siri’s response, “now playing playlist fire fire.” I have never listened to any playlist with the word fire in it, let alone a playlist called “fire fire”.

    It’s getting depressing how bad Siri is, and the implications of Siri’s failure to do basic tasks after over 6 years in development...

    I have never ever been a hand-wringer when it comes to Apple. Not when Steve died. Not when Tim was being dumped on at every turn. But for Apple to keep failing so miserably at the cornerstone of their ecosystem (if not now, Siri will be, inevitably) is beyond frustrating. 
    I am not a Siri fan. It is very spotty. Sometimes it works great, other times just terrible. The idea with CarPlay was that it will keep your eyes on the road, but I'd argue that it is less distracting to text while driving than to try and get Siri to do the right thing when she is in in a bad mood. Texting using Siri is close to impossible. The response delay means it rarely works first time, and if you hesitate for a split second during the message it is all over and you have to start again. Using the iPhone in the car for me is a 'set it before you start to roll, and turn it off when you stop' deal.
    Anything like that, including talking with someone while driving, should not be done at all (personal opinion of course).
    If someone is in the car and talking, it's slightly less of a problem cause they adjust to the environment, but still not ideal.

    That's why I think automated driving will be a boon, people don't realize how badly they drive on average and how close they are to maiming themselves and others on a daily basis (just luck it doesn't happen more often...).
  • Reply 9 of 20
    foggyhill said:

    Anything like that, including talking with someone while driving, should not be done at all (personal opinion of course).
    If someone is in the car and talking, it's slightly less of a problem cause they adjust to the environment, but still not ideal.

    That's why I think automated driving will be a boon, people don't realize how badly they drive on average and how close they are to maiming themselves and others on a daily basis (just luck it doesn't happen more often...).
    Interacting with your phone (texting or talking) while driving isn't a matter of personal opinion, it is ILLEGAL for reasons of the bleeding obvious.
  • Reply 10 of 20
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 18,261member
    kimberly said:
    foggyhill said:

    Anything like that, including talking with someone while driving, should not be done at all (personal opinion of course).
    If someone is in the car and talking, it's slightly less of a problem cause they adjust to the environment, but still not ideal.

    That's why I think automated driving will be a boon, people don't realize how badly they drive on average and how close they are to maiming themselves and others on a daily basis (just luck it doesn't happen more often...).
    Interacting with your phone (texting or talking) while driving isn't a matter of personal opinion, it is ILLEGAL for reasons of the bleeding obvious.
    Where do you live that hands-free talking and text interaction is illegal? Certainly not illegal where I am. The closest thing to that I'm aware of is doing so in a school zone in California. The same California that in essence is saying you shouldn't be using your iPhone/other smartphone no matter where you are.  The CDPH recommends not keeping your phone in your pocket, not holding it to your ear for long phone calls, avoid using at all if there are two bars or less, not sleeping with it at bedside at night and warning of increased radiation danger if you are using it on a fast moving bus or train.

    ...and why are we even the topic now?
    edited February 18
  • Reply 11 of 20
    I primarily listen to heavy metal.  I have a huge album collection on Apple Music.  A lot of the bands I listen to have unique band names (listening to Xanthrochroid right now).  I tried 10 times and I could not get Siri to play any album by them, she consistently butchered their name and played bands ranging from hip hop to classical instead based on what she thought she heard.  

    If Apple is going to market this as a smart speaker that sounds great, then they need to make sure the damn thing can read artists from THE MUSIC SERVICE THEY PROVIDE!  It's not like I'm trying to link this up to a 3rd party music service, this is a band on Apple Music.  She should be able to recognize the name and play them.  Very very frustrating for a $350 device.

    But I'm going to keep it.  Why?  Because it sounds fantastic and when Siri in all her stupidity can't play an artist I'll just pull out my phone and use the HomePod as a AirPlay speaker.  It's not as convenient but it works and it supplies my living room with great quality music.  I hope they figure this out eventually, because there is so much potential here.
    patchythepiratewatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 20
    Another video tempting me into getting one, still undecided though!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 20
    kimberly said:
    foggyhill said:

    Anything like that, including talking with someone while driving, should not be done at all (personal opinion of course).
    If someone is in the car and talking, it's slightly less of a problem cause they adjust to the environment, but still not ideal.

    That's why I think automated driving will be a boon, people don't realize how badly they drive on average and how close they are to maiming themselves and others on a daily basis (just luck it doesn't happen more often...).
    Interacting with your phone (texting or talking) while driving isn't a matter of personal opinion, it is ILLEGAL for reasons of the bleeding obvious.
    Did I say differently, wth are you shouting about, talking handsfree is legal around here btw, though again I think it is distracting and should not be done.
  • Reply 14 of 20
    rattlhed said:
    But I'm going to keep it.  Why?  Because it sounds fantastic and when Siri in all her stupidity can't play an artist I'll just pull out my phone and use the HomePod as a AirPlay speaker.  It's not as convenient but it works and it supplies my living room with great quality music.  I hope they figure this out eventually, because there is so much potential here.
    And if you have Watch you can use that to Play/Pause, skip track, control volume without a need of Siri. 
    watto_cobramavemufc
  • Reply 15 of 20
    Regarding personal requests being enabled/disabled on a family HP -  If I turn them off, I assume we will lose the ability to add to a shopping list Reminder shared with my wife?  I hadn't thought of this before, and if true this would be the deal breaker along with no access to our shared family calender...  She isn't convinced we need a Homepod at all and I can't sell it to her on sound quality alone :( 
  • Reply 16 of 20
    foggyhill said:
    kimberly said:
    foggyhill said:

    Anything like that, including talking with someone while driving, should not be done at all (personal opinion of course).
    If someone is in the car and talking, it's slightly less of a problem cause they adjust to the environment, but still not ideal.

    That's why I think automated driving will be a boon, people don't realize how badly they drive on average and how close they are to maiming themselves and others on a daily basis (just luck it doesn't happen more often...).
    Interacting with your phone (texting or talking) while driving isn't a matter of personal opinion, it is ILLEGAL for reasons of the bleeding obvious.
    Did I say differently, wth are you shouting about, talking handsfree is legal around here btw, though again I think it is distracting and should not be done.
    Get caught taking on the mobile (including hands free) here in Australia will get you fined.  Anyhow, I was commenting on the post that prompted you to comment ... I can nonetheless see why you misunderstood @foggyhill.
  • Reply 17 of 20
    Regarding personal requests being enabled/disabled on a family HP -  If I turn them off, I assume we will lose the ability to add to a shopping list Reminder shared with my wife?  I hadn't thought of this before, and if true this would be the deal breaker along with no access to our shared family calender...  She isn't convinced we need a Homepod at all and I can't sell it to her on sound quality alone :( 
    Shared Reminders won’t be a problem. Since Siri doesn’t care who orders her, your wife can easily add items to those lists & it will be shared to her iPhone. The problem is only for Reminders that you don’t share & don’t want other people to mess with. 

    Calendar support will come soon. It’s such an obvious choice. 
    edited February 19
  • Reply 18 of 20
    matrix077 said:
    Regarding personal requests being enabled/disabled on a family HP -  If I turn them off, I assume we will lose the ability to add to a shopping list Reminder shared with my wife?  I hadn't thought of this before, and if true this would be the deal breaker along with no access to our shared family calender...  She isn't convinced we need a Homepod at all and I can't sell it to her on sound quality alone :( 
    Shared Reminders won’t be a problem. Since Siri doesn’t care who orders her, your wife can easily add items to those lists & it will be shared to her iPhone. The problem is only for Reminders that you don’t share & don’t want other people to mess with. 

    Calendar support will come soon. It’s such an obvious choice. 
    Thanks Matrix077...  Good info! 
  • Reply 19 of 20
    I'm growing a bit lukewarm to my HomePod. It got in a state for a while where it would acknowledge my request to play music, but nothing would play. It seemed to be stuck on permanent pause. I could stream from my mac, but all attempts to get it to play via voice control would simply fail. 

    I eventually got it out of that state, but I don't remember how. Maybe tapping it, maybe fiddling with the settings. It left a bad taste in my mouth because one of the reasons I got it was that I expected it to just work. <shrug> 

    It also pisses me off that I can't skip an entire album. I was working around the house and I asked for an artist and it started playing their Christmas album. I eventually learned I can edit the metadata on my mac to exclude certain albums from shuffle, but it was annoying I couldn't just say "hey siri, skip this album". 

  • Reply 20 of 20
    I'm growing a bit lukewarm to my HomePod. It got in a state for a while where it would acknowledge my request to play music, but nothing would play. It seemed to be stuck on permanent pause. I could stream from my mac, but all attempts to get it to play via voice control would simply fail. 

    I eventually got it out of that state, but I don't remember how. Maybe tapping it, maybe fiddling with the settings. It left a bad taste in my mouth because one of the reasons I got it was that I expected it to just work. <shrug> 

    It also pisses me off that I can't skip an entire album. I was working around the house and I asked for an artist and it started playing their Christmas album. I eventually learned I can edit the metadata on my mac to exclude certain albums from shuffle, but it was annoying I couldn't just say "hey siri, skip this album". 

    I'm having repeated problems with Siri becoming "hard of hearing".

    Scenario: HP is sitting idle. From across the room in a normal speaking voice, I say, "Hey, Siri. Play songs by [artist]". Siri responds and plays songs by [artist]. Once the music starts playing - even at low volumes - Siri becomes non-responsive. I raise my voice. No go. I walk closer to the HP just a few feet away and raise my voice. Siri finally responds. I can power-cycle the HP and it works normally - Siri can easily hear me from across the room at a normal speaking volume even when the music is playing loudly. The problem seems to occur after the HP is used after it has been sitting idle "for a while".

    I've also been using the HP to add items to my shopping list in an attempt to replace this functionality in my Amazon Echo devices. Siri often trips up on specific product names.

    Me: "Hey, Siri. Add Tide Pods to my shopping list." (They're delicious.)
    Siri: "I've added iPods to the shopping list."
    Me: "Hey, Siri. Add Claussen pickles to my shopping list."
    Siri: "I've added closet tickles to the shipping list." (O_o)

    Alexa knows product names much better. Even when it comes to identifying music requests, Alexa beats Siri. I'm very pleased with the sound quality of the HP. Hopefully, Siri's intelligence will improve.
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