Apple has discontinued the standard HomePod and will now exclusively sell the HomePod mini. The original HomePod was unveiled by Apple in June 2017 and was praised for its excellent sound quality. However, it failed to sell in decent numbers due to its high price tag.
When the HomePod first launched, the smart speaker market was flooded with budget offerings from Amazon, Google, and others known more for their smartness and less for their sound quality. The HomePod focused on the exact opposite: it delivered excellent sound quality, but Siri on the speaker was nowhere as good as Alexa or Assistant.
Apple will continue to sell the HomePod via its online store until stocks last. After that, though, consumers will only have the option to purchase the $99 HomePod mini. The Space Gray HomePod is already unavailable on Apple’s online store in the United States. Apple will continue to provide support for the HomePod as well.
HomePod mini has been a hit since its debut last fall, offering customers amazing sound, an intelligent assistant, and smart home control all for just $99. We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini. We are discontinuing the original HomePod, it will continue to be available while supplies last through the Apple Online Store, Apple Retail Stores, and Apple Authorized Resellers. Apple will provide HomePod customers with software updates and service and support through Apple Care.
The $99 HomePod mini has also been praised for its sound quality despite its relatively small size. The $99 price tag also helps as it makes the smart speaker more affordable than the HomePod. Apple has also managed to improve the Siri experience on the speaker, which further helps.[Via TechCrunch]