Video: Apple gets ready to ship HomePod after month-long delay

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  • Reply 21 of 54
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 2,068member
    Sure a speaker is fine and all - but when I have siri on my wrist, in my ear buds, on my phone and on my mac.. chances are that i really don't need her sitting on a shelf somewhere too, I already have very good access to her. Amazon however needs Alexa sitting on a shelf because they don't have a single product in the market that is in the personal space of their users. This whole category is tiny in the market, I don't see that changing after apple's introduction.
    NPR says 27 Million Americans own a Alexa device.   That's not tiny and at some point they will probably do another phone.  Once a lot of people use Alexa to connect to many devices in their home, why wouldn't you want an Alexa phone.   Google should really worry a lot.   Apple a little.
  • Reply 22 of 54
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,033member
    k2kw said:
    Sure a speaker is fine and all - but when I have siri on my wrist, in my ear buds, on my phone and on my mac.. chances are that i really don't need her sitting on a shelf somewhere too, I already have very good access to her. Amazon however needs Alexa sitting on a shelf because they don't have a single product in the market that is in the personal space of their users. This whole category is tiny in the market, I don't see that changing after apple's introduction.
    NPR says 27 Million Americans own a Alexa device.   That's not tiny and at some point they will probably do another phone.  Once a lot of people use Alexa to connect to many devices in their home, why wouldn't you want an Alexa phone.   Google should really worry a lot.   Apple a little.
    And I don't understand how he can say suggest with a straight face that tens of millions of devices in a home isn't in someone's "personal space." 
  • Reply 23 of 54
    welshdogwelshdog Posts: 1,826member
    I am curious if Apple is interested in expanding the speaker tech in HomePod to additional products. An Apple designed and built Atmos speaker system would be very interesting. Particularly if AppleTV can be made to support Atmos.  Of course an Apple television would be nice, but no one seems to think that will ever happen. There seem to be fewer and fewer TV manufacturers these days and the ones that remain don't seem to be doing much that is interesting.
  • Reply 24 of 54
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 6,102member
    k2kw said:
    Sure a speaker is fine and all - but when I have siri on my wrist, in my ear buds, on my phone and on my mac.. chances are that i really don't need her sitting on a shelf somewhere too, I already have very good access to her. Amazon however needs Alexa sitting on a shelf because they don't have a single product in the market that is in the personal space of their users. This whole category is tiny in the market, I don't see that changing after apple's introduction.
    NPR says 27 Million Americans own a Alexa device.   That's not tiny and at some point they will probably do another phone.  Once a lot of people use Alexa to connect to many devices in their home, why wouldn't you want an Alexa phone.   Google should really worry a lot.   Apple a little.
    Not sure Google cares if Amazon builds another failure Android phone with a tacked on assistant, I assume they didn't freak out when Samsung did this, and they sell a shittonne more phones than Amazon ever did with the Fire Phone. Can 3rd party Android variants use an always-on assistant anyway? Real question.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 25 of 54
    bluefire1bluefire1 Posts: 1,214member
    Bought both the Amazon Echo 2nd generation and Echo Spot and am really enjoying them. That said, I'll still be purchasing the HomePod. 
  • Reply 26 of 54
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    I don't understand. I have a single stereo/speakers set that outputs audio from the TV as well as music (radio, AirPlay by way of Airport Express, etc). Why do you need two?
    My setup is an Apple TV 4th gen. connected to an old Samsung DLP TV with only one HDMI input, but an excellent speaker system -- 3 speakers embedded in the fascia on either side of the screen, which mimic surround sound fairly well -- and, for music, believe it or not, I've got an even older iPod Hi-Fi connected to my network with an AirPort Express. So...a) I'm definitely not an audiophile, b) my living room is small, and c) on top of all my other techno-peculiarities I'm also something of a cheapskate.

    Still, it is time to upgrade. I'm thinking an OLED 4K HDR TV, a 4K Apple TV, but instead of a sound bar, the two HomePods to do double duty, which will allow me to forego a receiver with more features than I need.

    And yes, I do realize that a single good receiver will support switchable outputs to both a high-end set of music speakers, and a soundbar or a Dolby multiple speaker (5, 7, whatever) surround sound system. In my original comment, I was thinking more of the fact that most of the people I know who are really into such things think that cinema speakers don't do justice to their music, and are likewise critical of music speakers hooked up to their TVs. So at a minimum, they want two sets of speakers. The real geeks, the ones with a separate home theater in another room, generally seem to favor separate amplifier systems as well. Above my pay grade, of course, so I may be missing some of the finer points.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 27 of 54
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    What’s it’s USP? There has to be a fundamental reason to its delay. Surely all thT processing power is there for something special?

    Siri is still way behind Alexa, crack Siri and it’s a winner, also enabling open source apps is a must. I love it but i’m Out until it makes a compelling case.
    Not a super compelling USP but if the screen does more than just show a siri waveform, that would be useful.  The LACK of a screen on echo and google home is a real handicap - needing to ask how much time is on a timer rather than just glancing is cumbersome.  Also, again not a compelling USP but an interesting one - leveraging Apple's ability to extend a single phone number to multiple devices would be very interesting.  I guess we'll see when it comes out but my guess is no USP beyond high quality sound.
    Not sure how useful the screen is unless you’re standing right next to the device and looking over it. 
    watto_cobrapatchythepirate
  • Reply 28 of 54
    Amazon Echo and Google Home processors may be tainted with Meltdown & Spectre, while Apple may have had enough time to introduce hardware fixes in the HomePod A8 processor.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 29 of 54
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    Ummm?
    I have used a single high quality sound system for both audio and home theater for, well, decades...

    I see no reason to separate it.  Nor do I see any reason to replace a high quality sound system with a single bookshelf type speaker that, while good (maybe even great) for a single small speaker, simply cannot match the sound quality of a full, high end system.
    jdgazStrangeDays
  • Reply 30 of 54
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    Sure a speaker is fine and all - but when I have siri on my wrist, in my ear buds, on my phone and on my mac.. chances are that i really don't need her sitting on a shelf somewhere too, I already have very good access to her. Amazon however needs Alexa sitting on a shelf because they don't have a single product in the market that is in the personal space of their users. This whole category is tiny in the market, I don't see that changing after apple's introduction.
    Thank you....  Well said...
  • Reply 31 of 54
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    It seems to me that this device is competing with high end audio systems on one end and a very portable, always with you Siri on the iPhone and Apple Watch on the other end.  Frankly, it does not seem like a product that Steve Jobs would have produced because it doesn't do much, if anything, to improve people's lives.

    Instead it seems to me to be somewhere between a toy and a way to compete with Google and Amazon devices.

    Perhaps though, its future lies in the automated home where everything from lights, to locks to appliances is run through it and controlled by it.  Until then:   "Siri, What should I wear today?"
  • Reply 32 of 54
    mike1mike1 Posts: 2,981member
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    One properly set-up Home Theater system will also work very well for music. Even 2-channel music, if you prefer. Certainly don't need two systems.
    Personally, I'll use HomePod for everywhere else in the house except my living room.
    StrangeDaysGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 33 of 54
    imatimat Posts: 200member
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    If this was possible I would buy two immediately. Turning the TV on just to listen to some music is cumbersome. I doubt it will be possible though. I live in a strange corner of the world where basically I have Siri in italian on my iPhone, AppleWatch, iPad but NOT on my AppleTV. Don't ask me why, because I honestly don't understand Apple on this one. Anyway... I hope Siri on HomePod is really good (good as in "I can say a sentence in italian and the name of the band in english (mind you, I don't speak with a "heavy italian accent"). Really good as in "it reacts fast to HomeKit requests ("Hey Siri, turn the dining table lamps on at 50%). I would not even dream of a Siri that does more, like 2 HomeKit actions at once "hey Siri turn the dining table off and the sleeping room on at 50%". So, given the choice between speakers for AppleTV and a good Siri I would go for a good Siri anytime.
  • Reply 34 of 54
    jdgazjdgaz Posts: 388member
    mike1 said:
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    One properly set-up Home Theater system will also work very well for music. Even 2-channel music, if you prefer. Certainly don't need two systems.
    Personally, I'll use HomePod for everywhere else in the house except my living room.
    Agree mike1, HomePod is going to be real nice in bedrooms, master baths, and outdoor spaces that have an electric outlet nearby. I will keep my home theater/stereo setup for main listening including LP's.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 35 of 54
    imat said:
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    If this was possible I would buy two immediately. Turning the TV on just to listen to some music is cumbersome. I doubt it will be possible though. I live in a strange corner of the world where basically I have Siri in italian on my iPhone, AppleWatch, iPad but NOT on my AppleTV. Don't ask me why, because I honestly don't understand Apple on this one. Anyway... I hope Siri on HomePod is really good (good as in "I can say a sentence in italian and the name of the band in english (mind you, I don't speak with a "heavy italian accent"). Really good as in "it reacts fast to HomeKit requests ("Hey Siri, turn the dining table lamps on at 50%). I would not even dream of a Siri that does more, like 2 HomeKit actions at once "hey Siri turn the dining table off and the sleeping room on at 50%". So, given the choice between speakers for AppleTV and a good Siri I would go for a good Siri anytime.
    I have a similar problem. My native language is American English, and I live in the U.S., so all my Apple devices are set up for that. My second language, however, is German, so I listen to a lot of German podcasts, and watch a fair amount of German TV via Airplay. Siri is useless for the German stuff, unless I switch languages in the device settings. Google Translate can handle my spoken inputs in either language, but mix the two, and things go south quickly. Given the number of bilingual and multilingual people in the world, voice assistants which can handle inputs in any language, or in mixed languages, are probably on the horizon somewhere, but for now, lotsa luck....
  • Reply 36 of 54
    jbdragon said:
    What’s it’s USP? There has to be a fundamental reason to its delay. Surely all thT processing power is there for something special?

    Siri is still way behind Alexa, crack Siri and it’s a winner, also enabling open source apps is a must. I love it but i’m Out until it makes a compelling case.
    Do you actually use any of these voice assistant devices? I do!!!! Siri is not way behind. Alexa is far from better. Personally, I think the Apple Watch which can do pretty .....
    <br><br>
    Interesting points. I haven't done any comparisons to competitors, but Siri has been incredibly frustrating for me, especially on the watch, which should be Apple's answer to the mini smart speaker competitors. Even though I plan to get a homepod, or two, my expectations for them being any more than interesting sounding speakers are very low.

    The problem is that I have very little faith in Siri. It fails too much (even after 6-7 years in development, pretty terrible). The other day I tried 8 times to play the New Music Mix playlist on Apple Music. I tried 8 different permutations of what I thought would get Apple to play it, and it kept giving me crap every time. I tried it again just now, and it works now, but I wouldn't have even bothered trying again if I weren't writing this comment. When siri fails at such simple things, even with multiple tries, I end up giving up, and I know I'm not the only one.

    On the watch it's much worse (using series 2). 1) It's much slower, and 2) 1/3 of the time I get some bullshit "I'll tap you when I'm ready" (I've never been tapped when it's ready before, ever) or some other delay comment. This is independent of me being on cellular via my phone or home wifi (and 99.9% of the time my phone is well within range). I use homekit multiple times every day. I've given up on even trying with my Apple watch. I go look for my phone x and hold down the home button. It's shouldn't have to be that way.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 37 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,063member
    k2kw said:
    What I'd really like to do with HomePods, apart from playing music on them, is to use a pair of them as TV speakers for an Apple TV setup. It's always seemed a waste to me to need two sound systems in my living room, one for music playback, and one for the TV. I realize that for audiophiles, and for home cinema fans, having two speaker systems, whether or not they're fed from the same receiver/amp, is the way to go, but for ordinary mortals like me, having one reasonably high-quality speaker pair serving both use-cases would be pretty compelling.
    Exactly what i would use it for.

    If you have an Apple TV, it should definitely be able to hook up using Airplay 2. 

    Other than that, I'm not sure if it'll hook up like that with a Smart TV. Would be nice. 
    I am wondering if Apple will come out with a full System like SONOS with sound bar and bass unit.  

    I Would like it to do 5 things:
    1. Stream music and audio from iOS to multiple units.
    2.  Home theatre with sub woofer .
    3.   Act as PC speakers for both windows and macOS
    4.    Enable home automation control via Voice where Siri finally understands me like Alexa does.
      Siri needs to be great.
    5.   Support multiple accounts for families.

    it doesn't have to have a home theatre sound bar right now, but tell me it's is coming by the end of this year.

    A HomePodMax coming in the future would be great too.
    FYI iOS already allows multiple family members to issue HomeKit scene and device commands via Siri. We don't have a problem with it understanding us, either.
    edited January 2018
  • Reply 38 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,063member
    Soli said:
    k2kw said:
    Sure a speaker is fine and all - but when I have siri on my wrist, in my ear buds, on my phone and on my mac.. chances are that i really don't need her sitting on a shelf somewhere too, I already have very good access to her. Amazon however needs Alexa sitting on a shelf because they don't have a single product in the market that is in the personal space of their users. This whole category is tiny in the market, I don't see that changing after apple's introduction.
    NPR says 27 Million Americans own a Alexa device.   That's not tiny and at some point they will probably do another phone.  Once a lot of people use Alexa to connect to many devices in their home, why wouldn't you want an Alexa phone.   Google should really worry a lot.   Apple a little.
    And I don't understand how he can say suggest with a straight face that tens of millions of devices in a home isn't in someone's "personal space." 
    You're ignoring the criteria he used to define "personal space" -- a device carried on one's person, like a phone, watch, or ear buds. It doesn't matter how many speakers on shelves there are, that still doesn't mean they're in personal spaces. If I walk into the guest bathroom there is no speaker on a shelf there, but there is still Siri on my wrist and in my pocket. If I walk into the laundry room there is no speaker. Etc... Thus, shelf speakers are not the same as personal space devices like watches and phones.
  • Reply 39 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,063member

    jbdragon said:
    What’s it’s USP? There has to be a fundamental reason to its delay. Surely all thT processing power is there for something special?

    Siri is still way behind Alexa, crack Siri and it’s a winner, also enabling open source apps is a must. I love it but i’m Out until it makes a compelling case.
    Do you actually use any of these voice assistant devices? I do!!!! Siri is not way behind. Alexa is far from better. Personally, I think the Apple Watch which can do pretty .....
    <br><br>
    Interesting points. I haven't done any comparisons to competitors, but Siri has been incredibly frustrating for me, especially on the watch, which should be Apple's answer to the mini smart speaker competitors. Even though I plan to get a homepod, or two, my expectations for them being any more than interesting sounding speakers are very low.

    The problem is that I have very little faith in Siri. It fails too much (even after 6-7 years in development, pretty terrible). The other day I tried 8 times to play the New Music Mix playlist on Apple Music. I tried 8 different permutations of what I thought would get Apple to play it, and it kept giving me crap every time. I tried it again just now, and it works now, but I wouldn't have even bothered trying again if I weren't writing this comment. When siri fails at such simple things, even with multiple tries, I end up giving up, and I know I'm not the only one.

    On the watch it's much worse (using series 2). 1) It's much slower, and 2) 1/3 of the time I get some bullshit "I'll tap you when I'm ready" (I've never been tapped when it's ready before, ever) or some other delay comment. This is independent of me being on cellular via my phone or home wifi (and 99.9% of the time my phone is well within range). I use homekit multiple times every day. I've given up on even trying with my Apple watch. I go look for my phone x and hold down the home button. It's shouldn't have to be that way.
    Siri is markedly improved on AW3 than the other series, I don't know why. 

    But if your X is on the table you don't need to hold down its side button (there is no home button), you can just issue a HomeKit command all at once: "Hey Siri, it's TV time" or whatever, and it will parse and execute. 

    So it isn't that way. On new hardware anyway.
    edited January 2018 fastasleep
  • Reply 40 of 54
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,033member
    Soli said:
    k2kw said:
    Sure a speaker is fine and all - but when I have siri on my wrist, in my ear buds, on my phone and on my mac.. chances are that i really don't need her sitting on a shelf somewhere too, I already have very good access to her. Amazon however needs Alexa sitting on a shelf because they don't have a single product in the market that is in the personal space of their users. This whole category is tiny in the market, I don't see that changing after apple's introduction.
    NPR says 27 Million Americans own a Alexa device.   That's not tiny and at some point they will probably do another phone.  Once a lot of people use Alexa to connect to many devices in their home, why wouldn't you want an Alexa phone.   Google should really worry a lot.   Apple a little.
    And I don't understand how he can say suggest with a straight face that tens of millions of devices in a home isn't in someone's "personal space." 
    You're ignoring the criteria he used to define "personal space" -- a device carried on one's person, like a phone, watch, or ear buds. It doesn't matter how many speakers on shelves there are, that still doesn't mean they're in personal spaces. If I walk into the guest bathroom there is no speaker on a shelf there, but there is still Siri on my wrist and in my pocket. If I walk into the laundry room there is no speaker. Etc... Thus, shelf speakers are not the same as personal space devices like watches and phones.
    That's a personal device. A device in a personal space increases the scope of the original definition. My bed, TV, microwave, refrigerator all in my home, which is my personal space, but they are not personal devices as commonly referred to those that are handheld or pocketable. Don't confuses devices one wears or keeps on one's person with ones that are in one's personal space.
    edited January 2018
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