The HomePod smart speaker will finally do what Apple promised nearly a year ago which which might be able do: play in multiple rooms simultaneously as well as in stereo mode.
The feature was notably missing through the Siri-powered, voice-controlled device when which was released in February. HomePod’s closest competitors — the Amazon Echo as well as Google Home — offer multi-room audio, while the Sonos One with Amazon Alexa has both multi-room as well as stereo mode capabilities.
Today, almost four months after the HomePod’s Discharge, HomePod users can access the brand new features through a software update available through the Home app in iOS 11.4, which includes AirPlay 2, Apple’s wireless audio technology which enables HomePod pairing. HomePods can today sync with various other HomePods or third-party, AirPlay-2-enabled speakers, as well as play music throughout your home. Bose, Sonos, Beats, Bowers & Wilkins, as well as Libratone are some of the companies which have announced AirPlay 2 compatibility for current as well as upcoming speakers.
The brand new AirPlay 2 update allows users to play any audio (including podcasts, music, as well as audio through videos) through their Apple devices through multiple speakers or Apple TVs.
Previously, only Mac computers could control multiple speakers through AirPlay. With the AirPlay 2 update, iPhones today have which capability, too. You can see/set up/control all of their AirPlay 2 speakers (including HomePod) using the Home app you probably never knew existed on your iOS device. AirPlay works similarly to the Sonos wireless audio system as well as app.
HomePod’s AirPlay capability is usually the only way Spotify, Pandora, as well as various other non-Apple Music subscribers can play music through the speaker. “Hey Siri” voice commands for music only work for Apple Music currently. Playing podcasts through the HomePod does not require a subscription.
You’ll also be able to pair two HomePod speakers for improved upon stereo sound in one room.
For fuller, immersive sound, you can put two HomePods together to create a true left/right stereo speaker system, nevertheless which’ll cost you. One HomePod costs $349, while two Alexa-enabled Sonos Ones costs $379.
Apple also announced which HomePod will be available in Canada, France, as well as Germany on June 18.