HomePod is Apple’s foray into the smart speaker market and offers seamless integration with Siri and HomeKit enabled accessories. From its specifications, it’s apparent it’s more of an audio-centric device than a smart assistant controller. Its competition in this emerging market is Amazon’s Echo.
If you are reading this and can’t decide between the two, we are here to make it easier for you to decide which one fulfills your requirements. So without any further ado, Let’s get into it.
The HomePod is a powerful speaker with some interesting internals. It’s powered by Apple’s A8 chipset and features an Apple designed 4 inch Woofer, 7 beamforming tweeters and an array of six microphones. The audiophile profile can be clearly seen.
Apple uses what it calls “Spatial awareness” to achieve a surround-sound effect. Its woofer and tweeter system works in combination by mapping the area around the HomePod and tweaking itself to provide the best possible sound.
As far as smart assistant functionality goes, its rather limited. You can only use the HomePod with iOS devices.
Music streaming is possible through AirPlay, regardless of the streaming service in use. For Siri play back and functionality Apple Music and iTunes Match is required.
The Amazon Echo has a 2.5 inch woofer, a 2 inch tweeter and 7 beamforming microphones and doesn’t have beamforming technology.
This was clearly not designed with audio quality in mind but does have other tricks up its sleeve.
- Streaming through Amazon Music Unlimited, Pandora and other services and Bluetooth streaming from other devices. Something that the HomePod clearly can’t do.
- Connectivity with smart appliances including those that support HomeKit integration while the HomePod only connects to those smart appliances that have the works with HomeKit tag.
- It can also send you ambient notifications regarding heavy traffic, delayed flights, scheduled appointments, reminders and more. This is called Proactivity.
The HomePod doesn’t have proactivity but Apple can add that with an update.
If you want a smart speaker for audio streaming and love Apple’s aesthetic and ecosystem, get the HomePod. If you want smart assistant functionality and control over your smart appliances, get the Amazon Echo.
Neither speaker is bad or mediocre, both excel at their intended roles. It all depends on what you want from a smart speaker.
We hope you found this comparison helpful in making the right purchase decision. If you have any further queries, let us know in the comments below.