(Cybertech) – Apple has announced a new HomePod. Called the HomePod mini, it’s a smaller, more compact smart speaker.
It actually looks like Apple’s full-size HomePod, complete with a mesh fabric exterior in black and white colours. But it has a shorter, more spherical shape and a small display on the top to show Siri’s lights and volume controls. It’s not just a speaker either; it works as a hub for all HomeKit devices, allowing you to control everything from your smart locks to your lights when you’re not home.
The HomePod mini features the Apple S5 chip, which Apple says enables computational models to tweak how the speaker sounds 180 times per second while you’re playing music. Multiple HomePod mini speakers can also work in sync, and they can even “intelligently” create a stereo pairing experience when they’re in the same room. Apple is also using the U1 chips from last year’s iPhones to support its Handoff feature.
To learn more about the new HomePod mini, check out our in-depth guide. You can also watch Apple’s hardware event from here.
HomePod mini will cost $99 (£99) when preorders start in the US on 6 November 2020, with shipping on 16 November 2020. Apple has also promised support for third-party music services, including Pandora, Amazon Music, and iHeartRadio. Spotify is not on the list.
The original HomePod cost $349 when it first launched in 2018. Check out our review of that smart speaker here.
Writing by Maggie Tillman.