Apple HomePod: First Impressions

Apple Homepod

You will never get a second chance to make first impression. Apple Inc. never misses those chances. Apple never fails to marvel us with any of their products. From iPhone to iMac, iWatch, everywhere apple makes happy with their hardware and design. When apple launches any new device, people line up at their store around the globe. Literally no other band has that much popularity. We can never deny the power of apple brands. It is also goes for Apple’s much-rumored smart speaker HomePod. The product is still to be in customers’ hand. It already has impact on the apple lovers of the world. But we all are waiting. Apple just launches the demo of HomePod in WWDC this year. The press had a close up look on it and shared their opinions of the device. The speaker will be available late 2017 and you can get it from Apple and other Electronics Stores.

Hardware and features

HomePod is the apple’s answer to the Amazon Echo. But it mainly focuses on music and sound quality. It includes impressive sound and Siri commands. It has superior microphone technology. Features include apple designed woofer, seven tweeters, spatial recognition and 7-inch mesh body speaker. it is designed to re invent the way music is enjoyed in the home.

Apple says that HomePod does something that no other company has managed to do. it combines a smart speaker with incredible sound. Apple has focused heavily on audio quality. In this aspect, HomePod can easily compete with Google Home and the Amazon Echo. Home pad is just less than seven inches tall.  But a lot of technology is packed into it. It includes a 7 tweeter array and an apple designed 4-inch upward facing woofer for crisp, clear, distortion free sound even at low volumes.

We think we can do a lot to make this experience much better. Just like we did with portable music, we want to reinvent home music. (Apple marketing Chief Phil Schiller)

The A8 Chip in HomePod makes it much more powerful than other smart speaker. It has spatial awareness which allows it to intelligently analyze a room and adjusts accordingly for the best possible sound. It also has touch controls for simple navigation. HomePod is round, compact and covered in a 3D mesh fabric. It is designed to offer spacious, room filling sound despite its small size.

Improved Siri

It is integrates with Apple Music and features built in Siri support. With a 6microphone array, HomePod id able to detect Siri commands from anywhere in a room, even when loud music is playing. Siri has improved understanding of musical related queries. It will serve users as in-home musicologist. A “Hey Siri” command activates Siri. A visible LED waveform at the top of speaker allows the user to detect that Siri is listening. All communication between Siri and Apple’s servers is anonymous and encrypted. Siri on HomePod can do much of what Siri on iPhone can do. It can do a lot more besides music, like providing news updates, playing podcasts and offer weather reports. It can also give traffic information and sports news. With this, users can set reminder, set times and send text messages and more.

Color and shape

HomePod comes in white or space gray color. It resembles a small mesh covered Mac Pro. It has a cylindrical body. On top, there is display that shows a Siri waveform when activated. To play/pause music and adjust the volume, there is a built in touch controls. It is 6.8 inches tall and 5.6 inches wide. There are no other external markings on the speaker. As it is simple and clean, it matches a wide range of interior.

Quality

At the Worldwide Developers Conference, press was able to get a close look and had their first impression. A number of individual has also had that chance to experience Apple’s new magic. Experts around the world already in debate that whether it can beat Sonos Play: 3 or Amazon Echo. For example, Mashable says “Sound was rich. The highs were sharp but not broken. The lows were deep, sonorous but not chest thumping.

We’re hitting on something people will be delighted wit. It’s gonna blow them away. It’s gonna rock the house. (Apple CEO Tim Cook on the HomePod)

The way the HomePod separated vocals from ambient, instrument based sound impressed CNET. It says “HomePod came off as bolder as and more vivid than Sonos: 3 in the experience I tried and a lot better than Amazon Echo.”

Engadget called the HomePod’s audio “incredible and said it blew its rivals out of the water. It also said, “The HomePod however, sounded crisp and bright no matter the musical genre fed though it. It rendered The Eagles as well it did Kendrick lamer.”

Others Impression

First impression is last impression. From what we’ve experienced so far, the Apple HomePod not only looks good but also sounds good. We can expect it because it is apple. Apple will be fighting a battle on many fronts. They have to fight against market leaders like Sonos who dominates multiroom speaker experience. When it comes to sound quality, first impressions are that Apple has done very good job.

It’s going to be a popular choice for Apple Music users. In the smart speaker race, Amazon and Google Home perhaps are less competitive. Siri becomes a vital point. Finally, it is priced $349. But price does not matter when it comes to think of quality. Apple lovers never think of price. Certainly, this device can fill a room with impressive, dynamic sound. There is no doubt in my mind that the HomePod’s speakers are impressive.