Today, Apple announced the new smart speaker HomePod Mini, which is the smaller and more affordable version of Apple HomePod in full size. The mini costs only $ 99. You can order yours on November 6 and it will start shipping on November 16. Enhanced audio and Siri integrations make it a seriously impressive competitor to Amazon Echo.
The HomePod Mini has a compact spherical design that is even more adorable than the full-size HomePod. It is a modern mesh cabin side that comes in both white and space gray colors, as well as a backlit touch surface where you can adjust the volume. It also lights up when you activate Siri.
The smart speaker has a U1 chip that enables support for Ultra Wideband. The chip allows devices to communicate with each other, enabling actions such as moving music from your phone to the speaker by simply holding the phone close to the speaker. It also allows multiple speakers in a room to automatically pair and play music in stereo.
The new Mini has a primary driver, two passive radiators for better bass response and an acoustic waveguide at the bottom for 360 sound so it sounds good no matter where you set it in a room. Coming soon is support for Pandora and Amazon Music, something that Apple has lacked.
Apple highlighted improvements to Siri with the HomePod Mini, bringing Siri much closer to competing services like Google Assistant. It’s now faster, offers more concise answers and is more intelligent, so you can do things like search for songs with lyrics. One big thing, and something that many smart assistants have struggled with, is support for multiple users. HomePod Mini can easily recognize individuals in your family and offer personal suggestions and answers for them.
There is deeper integration with your iPhone with app access, so you can send notifications, hear your daily updates and even send suggestions to CarPlay based on your preferences. So you can ask Siri something like “What time does Target close?” and CarPlay will automatically pull up the route to Target and get ready to go when you get in your car.
HomePod Mini has improved Smart Home integration, providing more comfort and convenience without complexity. Scenes let you control multiple smart devices at once, similar to Google Assistant Routines. With simple voice controls, you can dim lights, lock doors and change the temperature.
Mini also works as an intercom system, so you can send messages to other speakers in the house. This feature even works from your phone and lets you talk to the people in your house while traveling. This extends to CarPlay and works on AirPods so no matter where your family is or what they do.
Security is always important to Apple, so of course the HomePod Mini was designed with that in mind. Inquiries are never associated with an Apple ID, you can decide whether your requests are stored with Apple or not, and each request is protected by strong encryption.
The HomePod Mini sells for just $ 99 and is available in white and space gray. Despite its small size, it has a beat with its improved design for playing music, deep Siri integration and excellent intercom function. You can order yours on November 6 from Apple.