Tonight, Apple discontinues the original full-size HomePod. This discontinuation follows suit of that of the iMac Pro late last Friday. Both of these products debuted in WWDC 2017 with a release early next year.
The HomePod originally sold for $349 and aimed to compete with other smart speakers such as Google Home and Alexa Echo products. However, it wasn’t that successful given its relatively prohibitive price point and limited Siri capabilities. Other competitors were selling smart speakers for much lower prices. After learning from its customers’ feedback, Apple went back to the drawing board and release the HomePod mini, which starts at $99. Since the mini’s debut, it received much more positive feedback thanks to its more competitive price point. Consequently, Apple made a public statement regarding the HomePod’s discontinuation:
“HomePod mini has been a hit since its debut last fall, offering customers amazing sound, an intelligent assistant, and smart home control all for just $99. We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini. We are discontinuing the original HomePod, it will continue to be available while supplies last through the Apple Online Store, Apple Retail Stores, and Apple Authorized Resellers. Apple will provide HomePod customers with software updates and service and support through Apple Care.”
Remember the iPod Hi-Fi?
Funny enough, the HomePod’s discontinuation is a lot similar to that of the iPod Hi-Fi. The iPod Hi-Fi debuted on February 2006 as Apple’s premium “speaker” system. With that high price comes many compromises. This includes the lack of AM/FM radio and limited remote control capabilities. It wasn’t on the market that long as it pretty much crashed and burned. It was discontinued on September 2007.
Do you have the original HomePod? Now that Apple discontinues the HomePod, are you sad that it’s leaving the market? Do you think Apple made the right choice to pull the plug? Let us know in the comments below, or tweet us on Twitter @Appleosophy.