Apple WWDC Thoughts: HomePod

How stupid is the name?

Pretty stupid, but honestly, we’re going to get over it pretty fast. Remember all the jokes when iPad came out? That died out pretty fast after we got our hands on them. Now, specially as a guy, I’ve said the word “Pad” more times than my wife.

Specs: 7 Tweeters. 4″ Woofer. 6 microphones. A8 Chip for Siri. $349. Ships in December. Comes in White/Black.

It’s hard to judge how this will sound based on specs, but I have no doubt that for the price, it will sound amazing. Apple will be destroyed in the media if it doesn’t at least edge out Sonos speakers for the price point, and based on a select few people who were allowed to hear it @ WWDC, it already sounds better.

As someone who has always appreciated good quality sound (5.1 then 7.1 surround Klipsch system, THX certification, and high-end monitors for my computer desk speakers) I’m looking forward to this.

I do hope that I can easily take phone calls and listen to audio books with ease on this speaker, and that if I have multiples around the house, it’ll be able to sense where I am in the house via my watch or iPhone and move the audio around for me. I can see my wife using this feature a ton as she listens to audio books almost the entire day.

Thoughts

I will definitely pick one up as long as the initial reviews come back positive, as I was one of the first Echo purchasers when it was still in beta. My family uses the timer and music features all the time in the kitchen.

The speaker covered in mesh fabric concerns me for it being in the kitchen. We aren’t a “buy it and bake it” kinda family, nor do we cook mostly in the microwave or have delivery. We’re pretty traditional here in that my wife is a stay at home mom, and I work to support the family. She shops and cooks nearly all our meals from scratch, meaning she’s in the kitchen 3-4 hours per day. Because of that, flour, oil, and spices get thrown into the air a lot, so I do worry about the residue that will end up on the speaker if we put one in the kitchen.

The kitchen would actually be the best spot if we bought just one, as that is where Alexa sits. My wife listens to audiobooks and podcasts all day, and my kids crank up the tunes when doing chores at night. Alexa gets used for timers and I’m sure everyone in my household will appreciate the better quality music when we have a sudden Hansen Family Dance Party.

Daddy’s gotta show off those fresh early 90’s moves, yo.

As for me, I’d love one in my office for podcasts, audiobooks (I really don’t listen to much music anymore unless I’m writing, and then it’s with sound-cancelling headphones to focus on the story.) Even more it’s mostly focus-based alpha wave concentration sounds for writing.

I would also use it a lot for conference calls for work, but honestly, that’s about it. I have three computers, an iPad, iPhone and Apple Watch all within arms reach of me when I’m in my office. I really don’t need Siri to tell me how the weather is outside.

But we’ll see.

Till tomorrow,

Tom

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