HomePod has always been Apple’s premium smart speaker with built-in Siri technology, delivering superior sound quality with the ability to control other smart home devices, respond to messages and more.
However, it has been trying to compete in quality and price for several years with other much cheaper smart models, among which we can find Amazon Echo models, or Google Nest.
While with the arrival of the HomePod Mini in 2020, Apple was once again competitive in this market, offering a quality solution at a lower price, the company confirmed in March 2021 that the standard HomePod would be discontinued. Does this mean Apple has stopped working on the HomePod 2?
Although initially the vast majority came to think of the end of the smart speaker, the rumor mill has reopened the box with the possibility that in 2022 Apple will bring a new generation of HomePod speakers back to life.
Next, we round up all the rumors and leaks that have emerged on the net that lead us to believe that a new smart speaker from Apple is on the way, with renewed tunes also in terms of design.
When will the HomePod 2 be released?
While Apple generally updates its main product lines every year, see the Apple Watch, iPhone, iPad and Mac, the same cannot be said for this line of audio devices, whose launches are very far apart in time.
In fact, AirPods, AirPods Pro, and HomePod all have a different update schedule, with Apple waiting around 2.5 years to update its AirPods. In the case of the HomePod, being a first generation product, we don’t have reference dates.
Recent rumors suggest we could see a new smart speaker appear sometime in 2022. For now, following Apple’s March 2022 event which saw the arrival of the iPad Air 5, iPhone SE 3 and Mac Studio, there were no new HomePod 2 .
This does not prevent Apple from having planned to launch its new generation throughout this year, within the framework of one of the events that it will organize.
How much will the HomePod 2 cost?
The HomePod originally cost $349 when it launched and was criticized by many for its high price tag. So much so that Apple has reduced the price of the HomePod until leaving it at 329 $ in 2019.
Currently, the product has been removed from Apple’s product portfolio, so if you want to buy the original version, you will have to search among official distributors or on the second-hand market, where you will find it at a lower price.
It’s encouraging to see the HomePod Mini coming in at a competitive price of just $99. It’s still expensive compared to echo dot from Amazon, but it shows that Apple is willing to compromise on the price of its HomePod products.
We may be able to see a cheaper standard HomePod 2 to replace the ultra-high-end original, hopefully within the price range of competing smart speakers, as is the case with the Amazon Echo Show.
Take a look at the article on best smart speakers what can you buy.
What design will the HomePod 2 have?
It’s a little hard to predict, especially given the lack of leaks so far. That said, the HomePod mini is essentially a smaller, rounder version of the HomePod, made with the same materials and design lines.
Based on this, it seems unlikely that Apple will choose to present a totally different design from the current one, since the company has accustomed us to maintaining product consistency within the range of devices.
However, a new rumor from early 2022 suggests there could be a complete overhaul of the second-generation smart speaker, and it would all depend on how we interact with Siri.
According to a Reddit post, Apple’s virtual assistant let users know that certain answers to their queries are displayed on their HomePod. This way, the possibility is open that a new HomePod 2 is on the way with a built-in display.
What features will the new HomePod 2 offer?
With HomePod officially shut down, and no detailed rumors or leaks, this has become more of a wishlist than a series of leaks, but we explain where the news might go anyway.
At the heart of the HomePod currently is the A8 chipset, which is now aging. For reference, it’s the same chipset the iPhone 6 had in 2015.
That’s not a bad thing, as clearly the A8 is more than capable of handling the current set of smart features offered by Apple’s smart speaker, but to expand the offering Apple will have to increase processing power.
It’s hard to predict what features it will have because a smart speaker doesn’t need the same level of power as an iPhone, but if Apple wants to apply the same machine learning technology as the iPhone and the iPad, it will have to be at least an A12 Bionic. .
Along with an upgraded chipset, Apple’s U1 is also likely to be included, which brings ultra wideband (UWB) functionality to the device. Apple already integrates it into its product line of
The technology facilitates communication between the brand’s devices, enabling faster data transfer and more accurate location sharing. With the HomePod Mini, for example, it is possible to detect the presence of an iPhone nearby and switch the audio output to the speaker, and vice versa.
The downside with HomePod is that new features and functionality are often dropped via OTA update, eliminating the need for a hardware upgrade to introduce fun new things you can do.
Since the original HomePod launch, the lineup has gained new features, including support for AirPlay 2 or even Apple Intercom for messaging, as well as the ability to recognize up to six different household members by their voice.
As revealed at the October 2020 event, Apple plans to expand music streaming support to include Pandora and Amazon Music, and we can only hope that more services will be added in the future, even if the speakerphone has been discontinued.
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