A few months ago, US-based wealth management firm Raymond James conducted a survey on Apple HomePod- a wireless home speaker, and found that 14 percent of iPhone users were interested in purchasing the product. The device was debuted in June at Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) event.
“If we combine with those that intend to own a Beats wireless speaker, [HomePod ownership intent] exceeds the ownership interest in both speech-enabled speaker leader Amazon and Bluetooth speaker leader Bose,” Raymond James analysts Tavis McCourt and Mike Koban were quoted as saying in geomarketing.com.
The Siri-powered smart speaker claims to take the music experience to the next level. Users can play music directly over WiFi or AirPlay from iPhones, iPads, Macs, and Apple TVs. It is the first smart music speaker after Apple launched iPod Hi-Fi in 2007, which was later discontinued.
Besides, it will be able to control home appliances and take basic orders. The device which has six microphones can be activated verbally using voice command.
The device will cost USD 349 and will be available in two colors: white and space grey.
However, even six months after the announcement, the tech giant is yet to deliver the product in the market and has also delayed the launch of the speaker, scrapping their original release date of December to some point in early 2018.
Apple has issued a statement saying the production process needs “a little more time.”
“We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod … but we need a little more time before it’s ready for our customers. We’ll start shipping in the US, UK and Australia in early 2018,” an Apple spokeswoman told Reuters. Earlier it was expected to be released in December.
The device, when launched, will face competition with the likes of Amazon Echo, Google Home and the Sonos One, which have gained much popularity themselves. Whereas Amazon Echo is priced at $180 and Google Home costs $129.
Despite being on the higher side in price, HomePod has the potential to be the de facto speaker-come-home.