The full-size HomePod is back with new features, thanks to Apple

Jan 18, 2023, 4:38 PM UTC
3 mins read

Apple has once again revolutionized the smart speaker market with the announcement of the new $299 HomePod. Boasting a sleek and familiar form factor to the original HomePod released in 2018, this second-generation model packs a punch with its impressive list of new features.

One of the most notable additions is support for the wireless protocol Thread and the smart home standard Matter, allowing the speaker to seamlessly control compatible accessories and elevate your smart home experience. Powering this advanced technology is an upgraded S7 chip, first seen in the Apple Watch Series 7, ensuring a smooth and efficient performance.

In addition to its smart capabilities, the new HomePod boasts a four-inch woofer paired with five tweeters, delivering a powerful and immersive audio experience. The speaker also features a total of five microphones, allowing it to sense its position in a room and adjust its sound accordingly. And, like its predecessor, two speakers can be arranged into a stereo pair or used as speakers for the Apple TV 4K. The new HomePod also supports spatial audio with Dolby Atmos, taking your listening experience to new heights.

The new HomePod will be sold alongside the HomePod Mini, the smaller speaker version introduced in 2020. The new HomePod is available to order starting today and will begin shipping on February 3rd.

The new HomePod is a game-changer for smart home enthusiasts. With built-in temperature and humidity sensors, the possibilities for smart home automation are endless. This feature, which was previously rumored to be present in the HomePod Mini, is now available for consumer use, adding even more convenience to your daily routine.

In addition to its smart home capabilities, the new HomePod also boasts support for handing off music using Apple’s ultra-wideband technology, making it even easier to transition between devices seamlessly. The speaker’s voice assistant, Siri, can also recognize up to six different voices and provide personalized responses, ensuring that each family member’s preferences are taken into account.

But that’s not all, with a software update coming later this spring, the new HomePod will use its built-in microphones to listen for smoke or carbon monoxide alarms and notify you if it hears anything via an iPhone. This added safety feature is a great example of the new HomePod’s ability to enhance your lifestyle in multiple ways.

The new model is also a little shorter and lighter than the original HomePod, measuring 5.16 pounds and 0.2 inches shorter. The HomePod is also available in either white or gray, with a color-matched power cable, adding a touch of elegance to any room.

Unlike the original HomePod, which faced some challenges upon its release, the new HomePod is set to be a major success. With a more affordable price, support for Thread and the smart home standard Matter, and its ability to serve as a smart home controller, this new model is sure to appeal to a wider range of customers. The HomePod will be available in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, and 11 other markets.

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