Apple HomePod - Is it Really Ready?

Apple HomePod - Is it Really Ready?

When you ask someone why you can’t switch to Android the number one response you get is the Apple Ecosystem. For the longest time, Apple’s rather closed ecosystem has worked out pretty well.

For instance, when I bought my Apple Watch I was going to try it out for few weeks and I was so sure I was going to return it. But I got sucked into the ecosystem. Now I can’t live without it. I love how it unlocks my Mac without having to type my long password every time. So Apple’s locked down ecosystem has worked out pretty well so far. But there is another side of us that wish we can use Final Cut Pro on Windows or use iMessage on Android without a hack. If you are on the second category you probably will feel more locked down with the Apple’s HomePod. Today I got the black and the white version of the HomePod and let's go ahead and unbox it.

As much as I like using my unboxing knife as usual Apple has done an amazing job with the packaging so we won’t be needing a knife so let’s set this aside.

I wonder if this is the black or the white. Ohhh, look at that…. And this must be the white…. Yes, there it is…

HomePod is $349 and depending on how many you need for your entire home you are looking at close to $1200 investment in the next few years. You need an Apple Music subscription to play music directly from the HomePod. You can still AirPlay from your iPhone if you want to play music from Spotify or some other services buy you lose all the music control and Siri voice features when you AirPlay.

I was reading a Reddit thread about some interesting speculation that will make the investment in this HomePod ecosystem worthwhile. Imagine HomePod is a WiFi extender and Apple TV doubles as a WiFi router that you can hardwire to your modem. Now that’s a product worth $350. We will have to wait and see if the WiFi extender is already built into the HomePod and is just waiting to be activated now that will be awesome. We’ll have to wait and see.

Alright, let's go ahead and open up the black. You know I thought I like black when I saw it online. But the more and more I think about it I think I like the white HomePod better. Anyway, I got both here side by side for you guys look at so it’s easy to make that decision. To me, I think I am going to keep the white but I have a feeling once it starts collecting dust it’s going to look dirtier when compared to the black.

For some reason, the packaging is little different. The black HomePods base of the package is taller and deeper for some reason.

Also the HomePod s much smaller than what I imagined because all the images we saw online on Apple’s site didn’t have any reference to anything we already know. It’s just as tall as the iPhone X but it feels much heavier.

The mesh fabric is just so nice to look at from every angle. The mesh fabric design is supposed to enhance the acoustic performance as well. Like I said feel little heavy and it’s under 7 inches tall. And just for comparison here is how the black HomePod’s mesh fabric looks like.

At the bottom, we have a nice Apple logo and a rubberized support so it doesn’t move around.

On the top, we have the Siri animation and volume rocker. Tap once to Play and Pause, double tap to skip to the next song, Touch and Hold for Siri.

There is only one wire that comes out of the HomePod and it’s to power the device. We don’t have any other ports like a traditional speaker. The power cable also feels like it’s braided to match the mesh fabric feel and I really like it.

Overall the unboxing experience was amazing and this one of the big reasons why I started making these videos. To savor these unboxing moments when everything brand new.

Siri is seriously behind when compared to Google Assistant and even Alexa for that matter. For instance when you are on the iPhone and you ask something that Siri doesn’t have the answer to it just takes you to the web search so you are getting some information. But with HomePod you can’t really do that so Siri’s flaws are really magnified and this is a real issue for the HomePod adoption. The other day Alexa didn’t have something we were looking for and in an instant, we switched to Google Home Mini because it was on sale for like $10 or something. My 4-year-old was bummed Siri could not tell how many planets are there in the solar system and we didn’t get the correct answers for close to 40% of the questions since we got used to the rich content services from Google.

Out of all the smart speakers from Google and Amazon, HopePod is the best sounding. We all agree it’s a great speaker but you can’t use it as a Bluetooth speaker or connect any other device.

I have a Google Home and with the ChromeCast connected to the TV I can search and play any youtube tv on my tv just by talking to the Google home. Now that’s the ecosystem we need for today. That said you need to understand what you are getting for your money. It’s a great speaker with Siri built-in that can read your text messages, set the timer and stuff like that. That’s about it. Let me know in the comment section below what you guys think.

I am running a DJI Osmo Mobile Giveway so please check out the link in the description and I’ll see you guys in the next one.

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