Apple joins the mini Bluetooth speaker market with its new HomePod mini and at a surprisingly reasonable price. The HomePod mini is around 3.3 inches tall, and Apple says it is stuffed with “innovative technologies” and “advanced software.” Apple says these new technologies and software will work together and enable computational audio for great audio quality wherever you use it. HomePod mini will be available in white and space gray at a great price of just $99.
HomePod mini is designed to work with Apple Music, podcasts, radio stations from iHeartRadio, radio.com, and TuneIn, and in the coming months, popular music services including Pandora and Amazon Music. Multiple HomePod mini speakers work together to stream music or podcasts to multiple rooms, much like other popular speakers. By placing two HomePod mini speakers in a single room, a stereo pair can be created for a wider soundstage.
“HomePod mini has everything customers want in a smart speaker — amazing sound for listening to music, a world-class intelligent assistant that delivers a personal experience to each member of the household, and like every Apple product, it’s designed with privacy and security in mind,” said Bob Borchers, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. “HomePod mini is the ultimate smart speaker for anyone with an Apple device. It works effortlessly with iPhone to hand off the music, answer calls, or deliver personalized listening suggestions, elevates the sound from Apple TV, plays music from a Mac, and so much more. There’s a lot of Apple innovation packed into such a small speaker, all at an affordable price.”
HomePod mini delivers an incredibly rich and detailed acoustic experience, using computational audio to deliver peak performance. To achieve big sound out of such a compact design, the Apple S5 chip in HomePod mini works with advanced software to analyze the unique characteristics of the music and apply complex tuning models to optimize loudness, adjust the dynamic range, and control the movement of the driver and passive radiators in real-time. The Apple-engineered full-range driver, powered by a neodymium magnet and a pair of force-canceling passive radiators, enables deep bass and crisp high frequencies.
The new HomePod mini also offers Siri, smart home integration, and a new intercom feature. One person can send an Intercom message from one HomePod to another — whether in a different room, a specific zone, or multiple rooms throughout the home — and their voice will automatically play on the designated HomePod speaker. Other features include:
- Siri Shortcuts: Created on iPhone and iPad are accessible on HomePod mini, so users can ask Siri on HomePod mini to start a pot of coffee, control a robot vacuum, add milk to the grocery list, and more.
- Ambient sounds: Including rain, a fireplace, a stream, and more, offer the perfect background noise to focus, relax, or fall asleep. Siri can set a sleep timer so the sounds automatically stop playing.
- Find My: Helps locate a misplaced iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or Apple Watch by playing a sound to pinpoint its location.
- Web search: Results from HomePod mini can be sent directly to the user’s iPhone for easy viewing.
- Music alarms: Let users wake up to a favorite song, playlist, or radio station from Apple Music.
You can purchase the mini from Apple on its website.