New HomePod mini model isn't being worked on right now

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 22
Following the return of the full-size HomePod, consumers shouldn't expect a new HomePod mini anytime soon, because there's no obvious reason for an update to happen.




On Wednesday, Apple relaunched its HomePod almost two years after discontinuing the model. However, while the new version prepares to to on sale to consumers from February 3, it doesn't seem that any changes will be made to Apple's other smart speaker in the near future.

According to Mark Gurman's "Power On" newsletter for Bloomberg, he doesn't believe that Apple is actively working on a brand new HomePod mini.

The rationale is that, since the latest HomePod doesn't include any new major functions that aren't already in the $99 model, there "isn't an obvious reason to update the model." While it may be nice to introduce more color options, a cheaper price, and improve the speakers and microphones, Gurman feels the real improvements will probably be made on the back end, namely Siri and app integration.

The new HomePod's feature catch-up to the Mini included a U1 Ultra Wideband processor to enable Hand Off capabilities, with it and the HomePod mini also sporting temperature and humidity sensors that could help with Homekit automations.

Gurman's opinion differs from what he wrote in his newsletter in August 2022, when he offered that Apple was considering making an update to the HomePod mini. While not offering what those changes could've been at the time, Gurman admitted that any changes wouldn't be "super-impressive" to users.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 4
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,784member
    Apple should give up on speakers. I have come to the conclusion its finance gnomes had more to do with designing the new HomePod than the engineers.  Less speakers, an old SIP with older communications protocols, and none of the previous problems fixed. Must have had a stack of s7s sitting around in a warehouse they wanted to monetise.

    So leaving aside Gurman will probably come out with an opposite report in a week or two, why would anyone be surprised an improvement to the mini isn’t being considered? Apple will amortise the HomePod mini until every possible margin of its ever dwindling sales can be extracted, and damn the limitations.
    edited January 22 williamlondonmuthuk_vanalingamgrandact73
  • Reply 2 of 4
    I suspect this is a non-story. There's not a lot more* they can do with these products besides incremental improvements (many of which can likely happen as software updates).

    No doubt Apple would love for people to have HomePod minis sprinkled throughout their homes. And many people will. This creates a bit of an "ambient ecosystem" for Apple with Siri, HomeKit, and more.

    The standard HomePod is too pricing for that wide of deployment for most folks.

    I'm not expecting much but small incremental changes to these two products for now.

    I would like to see—and am surprised we haven't yet—a standard sound bar from Apple. Something that combines HomePod and TV functionality into one unit. It sits front and center in your living room. Perhaps with an integrated Ultra wide Center Stage camera to do family video calls, the whole shared TV/movie watching thing, games, etc. And with Apple's penchant for investing deeply into audio engineering, they could create a nice one. They could easily get away with pricing around $499 (and maybe a higher-end one for $699). (NOTE: I get that the idea is to sell you an TV plus a couple of HomePods to pair with it for your TV + sound experience, but I'm not sure most people are thinking this way when it comes to a sound bar for their TV. Besides sound bars are nicely designed to sit right in front/under the TV. The HomePods...not so much.)


    *I do love the idea someone had in another thread about a holographic display floating above the HomePod (mini or standard). But we're likely many years away from that. :smile: 

    starof80watto_cobragadgetfreak-apple
  • Reply 3 of 4
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,319member
    entropys said:
    Apple should give up on speakers. I have come to the conclusion its finance gnomes had more to do with designing the new HomePod than the engineers.  Less speakers, an old SIP with older communications protocols, and none of the previous problems fixed. Must have had a stack of s7s sitting around in a warehouse they wanted to monetise.

    So leaving aside Gurman will probably come out with an opposite report in a week or two, why would anyone be surprised an improvement to the mini isn’t being considered? Apple will amortise the HomePod mini until every possible margin of its ever dwindling sales can be extracted, and damn the limitations.
    Absolutely not. You very likely don’t even own them, but the full-size HPs sound terrific. Room-filling sound, high-quality enough for me to sell a 7.1 receiver and high-end Anthony Gallo speaker system. HPs are just that good and much easier to manage.

    You site fewer drivers at the same price, but also conveniently omit the price different from 2018 due to inflation - $300 in 2018 is about $360 today, which would throw you into an absolutely tizzy. 

    No idea what you’re on about regarding the processor, you sound confused, as it’s newer than both the prior HPs and mini. Not that I expect you could articulate why you believe you need more in a speaker you don’t even own anyway. Whatevs. Read up here:

    https://appleinsider.com/inside/homepod/vs/new-homepod-vs-2018-homepod---compared

    Listening to mine this very moment and loving. Don’t quit your day job, bro. It ain’t running the most successful publicly traded company in human history. 
    edited January 22 ihatescreennameswatto_cobramike1darbus69n2itivguy
  • Reply 4 of 4
    igorskyigorsky Posts: 660member
    entropys said:
    Apple should give up on speakers. I have come to the conclusion its finance gnomes had more to do with designing the new HomePod than the engineers.  Less speakers, an old SIP with older communications protocols, and none of the previous problems fixed. Must have had a stack of s7s sitting around in a warehouse they wanted to monetise.

    So leaving aside Gurman will probably come out with an opposite report in a week or two, why would anyone be surprised an improvement to the mini isn’t being considered? Apple will amortise the HomePod mini until every possible margin of its ever dwindling sales can be extracted, and damn the limitations.
    All reports are that the Mini is selling very well. Also early reviewers have said the new HomePods sound as good as the originals, even with fewer components. Sounds like you don't really know what you're talking about.
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