Why Does Apple Keep Making Pricey Niche Products Like The HomePod?

· Charlotte Henry · Link

We recently learned that that the HomePod is to be discontinued, with Apple turning its focus to the mini instead. Luke Dormehl at Cult of Mac made a compelling argument for why it demonstrates that the company should stop producing pricey, niche, products.

You can read the HomePod debacle as an admission of failure regarding Apple’s framing of the device as a smart speaker rather than high-end audio gear. But it’s more than that. It’s an illustration of Apple’s faltering strategy of creating premium products for niche corners of the market… What else that Apple currently manufactures falls into this same category of being far more expensive than its competition? If I was toiling away on the AirPods Max, I’d probably be nervous. Apple’s pricey over-the-ear headphones, which debuted at the end of last year, sell for $550. Again, Apple hasn’t broken out sales figures, but suppliers working on the AirPods Max reportedly view it as a niche product.

HomePod mini, Arcade, and Waiting for M-Processor Macs, with Bob LeVitus - ACM 542

· Bryan Chaffin · Apple Context Machine Podcast

Apple Context Machine Logo

Bryan Chaffin and Bob “Dr. Mac” LeVitus have both spent time with the HomePod mini, and they offer their thoughts on what it sounds like, where it’s useful, and who should consider it. They also talk about the value of Apple’s Arcade, especially now that it’s part of Apple One. They also talk about the power of Apple’s new M1 Macs, and discuss if people should buy Intel Macs at all any more.

Dr. Mac's HomePod mini Experience

· Bob LeVitus · Dr. Mac's Rants & Raves

Dr. Mac takes a pair of HomePod minis for a test-drive and doesn’t know many (possibly any) speakers this size that sound this good.

HomePod Software 14.3 Out Now

· Charlotte Henry · Link

Apple released version 14.3 of its HomePod software on Tuesday, MacRumors reported. It followed a spate of releases on Monday, which included the latest version of iOS with Fitness+.

The ‌HomePod‌ 14.3 is available for the ‌HomePod‌ and the HomePod mini, and according to Apple’s release notes, the update includes general performance and stability improvements. HomePod‌‌‌‌‌ software is installed automatically on the ‌‌‌‌‌HomePod‌ unless the feature is disabled‌‌‌‌.

Apple Releases iOS 14.2.1 for HomePod

· Andrew Orr · Product News

HomePod mini

Apple has released a 14.2.1 update for the HomePod and HomePod mini, bringing general bug fixes and improvements ahead of iOS 14.3.

Hands-on with HomePod mini and Big Sur, with Jeff Gamet - ACM 538

· Bryan Chaffin · Apple Context Machine Podcast

Apple Context Machine Logo

Jeff Gamet is back with Bryan Chaffin to talk about his hands-on experience with Apple’s new HomePod mini. How it sounds, how it compares with HomePod, and how it compares with Amazon’s Alexa Echo and Echo Dot. They also run over their hands-on time with macOS Big Sur.

Pandora HomePod Mini Support is Here

· Andrew Orr · Link

HomePod mini

Pandora now supports the HomePod mini ahead of its launch on November 6. Juli Clover tells us the details.

According to Pandora, ‌HomePod‌ integration requires the latest version of the Pandora app. Once it’s installed, open the Pandora app on an iPhone or an iPad, and then select ProfileSettingsConnect With ‌HomePod‌Use in Home to get it working. Music can be requested from Pandora by adding “on Pandora” to any ‌Siri‌ request for a song.