Apple’s HomePod was originally set to be released in December. Priced at $349, and the HomePod is slated to take on higher-end sound systems like Sonos, as well as smart assistants like the Amazon Echo and Google Home.
With the December holidays coming soon hopefully you weren’t counting on giving or getting your beloved one/s a HomePod for the holidays because Apple has recently delayed the release of the Siri-powered speaker from December to early 2018. Guess it needs more time to refine its first smart speaker.
In a statement, the company said it needed a “little more time” before the device was ready for its initial release in Australia, the UK and the US. It’s not yet clear how this will affect releases in other countries, but we wouldn’t be surprised if it pushed back their releases slightly as well. They were already being asked to wait until early 2018.
We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod, Apple’s breakthrough wireless speaker for the home, 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.
While the exact reasons for the delay aren’t clear, it’s not completely surprising. This is Apple’s first entry into the smart speaker realm, and it has to nail the experience if it’s going to compete. At the same time, Apple is effectively ceding holiday sales to a wave of new higher-end speakers like Amazon’s Echo Plus, Google’s Home Max and the Sonos One. The HomePod isn’t necessarily in trouble (Amazon and Sonos can only sell fully-featured devices in countries where Alexa works), but it may face a tougher battle than it did beforehand.