Apple invites HomePod owners to test beta update

Posted:
in General Discussion edited November 2020
Apple on Monday invited existing HomePod owners to test an upcoming software update through the company's AppleSeed beta program.




Sent to select users via email, the invitation does not specify what features, bug fixes or improvements are being tested as part of the initiative. According to social media posts, users who decide to participate in the AppleSeed program must agree to confidentiality agreements and limit discussions about the software to official feedback.

The HomePod beta release is the first to be offered to AppleSeed members. Previous incarnations of HomePod software were restricted to in-house evaluation. The beta is not part of Apple's public or developer beta programs and is being offered only to select AppleSeed participants.

HomePod played a minor role in Apple's WWDC keynote on Monday. The smart speaker was mentioned in a brief presentation about the Home app's new facial recognition feature, which can parse video feeds from a HomeKit-enabled camera to detect the faces of people who are tagged in the Photos app. For example, when a door camera recognizes a face, HomePod can announce who is at the door.

Apple elsewhere teased an upcoming feature that will allow HomePod users to replace Apple Music with a third-party music streaming service.

As with other beta software, Apple recommends testers install the HomePod beta on non-critical hardware.

Stay on top of all Apple news right from your HomePod or HomePod mini. Say, "Hey, Siri, play AppleInsider Daily," and you'll get a fast update direct from the AppleInsider team.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    imatimat Posts: 196member
    One can only hope Apple expands language compatibility to the HomePod
  • Reply 2 of 8
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 2,311member
    Probably required for the announcements of who’s at the door. Shame there’s no API for HomeKit speaker devices to globally announce something in a home (though this could potentially be used for the same effect, if Apple approved of the “misuse” of the API). 
  • Reply 3 of 8
    boxcatcherboxcatcher Posts: 239member
    I wish HomePod would just stay linked as my default speaker for AppleTV ... super annoying to always have to reconnect it.
    InspiredCode
  • Reply 4 of 8
    I wish HomePod ……
     :) 
  • Reply 5 of 8
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,566member
    I wish HomePod would just stay linked as my default speaker for AppleTV ... super annoying to always have to reconnect it.
    Mine generally does. It only ceases if I use it as the endpoint from another device, or when using it for music when the ATV is off. It seems modal, can only be set active to one device at a time, like AirPods. 
  • Reply 6 of 8
    I wish HomePod would just stay linked as my default speaker for AppleTV ... super annoying to always have to reconnect it.
    I second this.  If something else steals it away, the AppleTV should request it back next time it needs it.
  • Reply 7 of 8
    droodroo Posts: 27member
    I wish HomePod would just stay linked as my default speaker for AppleTV ... super annoying to always have to reconnect it.
    Mine generally does. It only ceases if I use it as the endpoint from another device, or when using it for music when the ATV is off. It seems modal, can only be set active to one device at a time, like AirPods. 
    This issue is a whole lot better than it used to be. Airplay and Youtube still mess it up, but I have to fight a lot less than to re-connect, than I used to. Usually now, I think, it mostly reconnects itself.
  • Reply 8 of 8
    mad42mad42 Posts: 5member
    I wish HomePod would just stay linked as my default speaker for AppleTV ... super annoying to always have to reconnect it.
    This is fixed in tvOS 14. TV will automatically reconnect the last used audio output configuration (including AirPlay speakers) after waking.

    Installing* the tvOS Public Beta is easy; just sign up via beta.apple.com with your main TV AppleID. Then turn on Beta updates in Settings>System>System Updates.

    *Note that running the tvOS Beta comes with some risks. There are not many bugs in 1st party or most popular streaming apps. For example: Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Disney and Prime all work fine. However, I’ve experienced huge issues with a few 3rd party apps—such as Sling and Philo.
    edited August 2020
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