HomePod Release Delayed

18 November 2017

9to5Mac:

Apple shared this statement with 9to5Mac confirming the delay:

“We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod, Apple’s breakthrough wireless speaker for the home, but we need a little more time before it’s ready for our customers. We’ll start shipping in the US, UK, and Australia in early 2018.”

When Apple announced the iMac Pro at WWDC in June, it made sense to do so despite the product not shipping until year’s end. Apple satiated the Mac Pro user base with a pledge to update it and the unveiling of the iMac Pro, which appeals to much of the same crowd. Even if you don’t want to buy one, it’s an impressive offering that proves Apple is still catering to professionals and should give some confidence that Apple will deliver on the modular Mac Pro promises with a product of equal calibre.

When Apple announced the HomePod at WWDC in June, I couldn’t understand why they chose to show it so far in advance. HomePod doesn’t have an SDK that developers could learn about, nor did it serve as a platform for a new wave of Siri features. Moreover, Apple didn’t need to scrape the barrel to find stuff to talk about. The WWDC keynote was jam-packed with hardware and software announcements. HomePod could have been cut and it would have still been a very impressive event.

I care less about the reason for the delay (it’s probably something boring) and more about why Apple felt pressured to announce their smart speaker prematurely in the first place. I’d love to hear the internal justification. In my view, HomePod could have been unveiled at the September event with no downside.