Opinions are going to be all over the map regarding Apple’s new HomePod. Here’s what to look for.

HomePod

You can now order the Apple HomePod. Selected reviewers already have production units in their hands and are busy sizing it up. The thing to keep in mind, however, is that the days of purely technical, neutral assessment are over.

That’s because there will be multiple customer approaches to this new audio product. Some prospective buyers will be eager to purchase a new Apple toy product and grow with it as it evolves. Some others will be skeptical about either the price or whether it genuinely meets their needs. Or at least their hopes.

As a result, there will be a corresponding spectrum of articles to chose from. Some will be incredibly informed and articulate, having drawn from extensive cooperation with Apple. Some will have a notable naysayer approach as the author choses to see the HomePod glass half full. And some articles will have sensible (but not effusive) advice about what’s there, what’s missing, and important nuances about how it functions.

Of course, each camp will claim, on social media, that the other camp is either exhibiting delirious fandom or unwarranted doomsday approaches.

The fact of the matter is that the HomePod is an Apple product. Concomitant with that fact is everything you get from an Apple product, from the hardware to the user experience. What’s left to the customer is to learn as much as possible and properly learn how to exploit the product, given its pros and cons.

And so, if Apple seems singularly unfazed by any of the criticism, it’s not because Apple is arrogant or obnoxious. It’s because Apple believes in what it does and makes the best product it can given the limits of technology and human endeavor.

In the end, that’s all we can hope for when it comes to Apple and our own technical pursuits. Twitter and Facebook are not buyer’s guides.

Page 2 has a sprinkling of some of these kinds of articles for you to chose from. But figure out which camp you’re in before you read on.

Next Page: The News Debris For The Week of January 22nd. HomePod mania.

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geoduck

Apple has proven me wrong before, but I really think the HomePod might just fail. It costs much more than other “smart speakers”. Most people don’t really understand the point of the device and so will first look at price. Its voice AI is not as smart as the others. That’s been the key selling point for the others for months. Ask Google what the next step in the recipe is. Ask Alexa how to spell some obscure word. Even if Siri can do some of this, Siri is best known for NOT getting the answer. Fair or not Siri… Read more »

andrewj050790

So, the range of reactions is similar to the iPod, the iPhone, the iPad, the Apple Watch. Interesting.

skipaq

It is not just a music player. It is an Apple Music player that is marketed with great sound and Siri capabilities. It is designed to enhance the Apple ecosystem. Things that work within that system will work well with HomePods. It is not designed to sell Amazon products or enhance Google searches. This is just one more skirmish in the ongoing platform war.

JoelS

If it is just a music speaker, why bother? If it is more than that, it better be good because they are going up against serious players. I suspect this will be one of those failed Apple products, but only time will tell.