The original HomePod, launched at the end of 2018, will not have a new model. After several months of speculation about the release of a new version, Apple has confirmed that they will stop manufacturing it. They will focus on the evolution and next generations of the HomePod mini, which takes the baton as an evolution of the technology with which the company inaugurated its family of smart speakers.
Apple will continue to provide support and software updates for the original HomePod, which will be sold while supplies last to focus on HomePod mini technology.
For all customers who already have their HomePods at home, Apple will continue to provide support and software updates, and they will continue to be available while supplies last.
The original HomePod was Cupertino’s first major entry into the smart speaker segment. It was the first inclusion of its own technology for great sound and a spectacular Siri listening system that was the result of years of research and development. With HomePod mini, they wanted to evolve the concept.
HomePod mini and its goal of taking HomePod technology further
Apple’s announcement means that the range of smart speakers will continue to improve: the arrival of the HomePod mini was a departure from what we knew with the original model, in a smaller, cheaper format and with features that are anything but “mini”. The company’s research will continue with them to improve the audio experience on these devices.
Here the experience Apple has taken in recent years is essential: the AirPods inaugurated the path towards miniaturisation while maintaining quality sound, which has been refined with the AirPods Pro and more currently, with the AirPods Max: no doubt the roadmap goes through offering a more powerful sound in a more compact space, which will be part of this next step in the life of computational sound and the research they have started with the tremendous success of the HomePod mini.
The experience in miniaturising components and the advances in research and development over the last few years, to achieve better sound experiences, will be the key to the next generations of HomePod mini.
We can almost consider this success of the “mini” models as part of Apple’s history: it happened with the iPod mini, which managed to become the best-selling model of the family, or with the Mac mini, which the company has evolved over the years to become one of the flagships of the new generation, including the Apple Silicon M1 chips. And while not strictly the same surname, the MacBook Air was also born from that concept and ended up laying the foundations in portability and key points for the visual language of today’s MacBooks.