Although the HomePod has only been on sale for a little while, the sales have fallen well below expectation. Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities claims that Apple is considering making a low-cost version of the HomePod to give the sales a much-needed boost. Kuo also predicted that while the market expects Apple to sell around 5 to 10 million HomePods, the number will probably be closer to 2 to 2.5 million, which is, well, disappointing to say the least.
An affordable and smaller HomePod could help increase sales in the short term. HomePod, according to Apple, is a powerful speaker and an intelligent home assistant adept at handling everyday tasks. So, Apple could possibly remove the Siri component and add a battery to make a portable version of the HomePod.
The reviews collectively agreed that the speaker is indeed incredibly impressive for the size and money, but is hardly the smartest one on the market. Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Home Speaker are significantly more capable when it comes to providing solutions and undertaking tasks.
This is probably because of the fact that Apple controls the personal data available to both itself and to any third party developer in contrast to Amazon’s Alexa. Alexa opens us to any third party developer, while Google’s Assistant has gobbled up as much data as possible to make it smart and capable.
A survey result showed that privacy wasn’t so high on the radar for an average customer during the HomePod launch. To them, the most visible issue was that their HomePod was dumber than its rivals. However, the increased publicity around the privacy controversies is changing that viewpoint.
Apple’s HomePod retails for $349 (approx Rs. 23206) and is more expensive than Amazon and Google devices. Even though Apple markets the HomePods as a high-end speaker rather than a speaker with a digital assistant built in, the competitor companies offer cheaper devices.
The cheaper version of the HomePod will compete directly with these devices. Apple currently offers cheaper versions of its iPhones and iPad, the iPhone SE costs $349 (approx Rs. 23206), and the entry-level iPad retails for $329 (approx Rs. 21800) . These devices have been pretty popular for Apple.
Thus, we suspect that the cheaper version of the HomePod will still focus on the audio quality. Therefore, we can expect the device to be more expensive than the Google and Amazon devices, but cheaper than the current version of itself.