The release of HomePod has sparked quite a debate in online forums and among passionate Apple followers. It is about whether the HomePod’s excellent music quality makes up for its lack of smartness. Many people have dismissed the HomePod due to Siri’s limited integration with third-party services. Instead, they prefer the Google Home or Amazon Echo despite these speakers not delivering sound quality anywhere close to that of the HomePod.
And let’s not forget that the HomePod only works with iOS devices which instantly limits its potential userbase.
Most people who have shared their HomePod experience online have noted how they have been blown away by its sound quality. Sure, Siri on the HomePod might not be smart but when you look at it as a speaker, the HomePod is definitely smart with many of its underlying features like a high-excursion woofer, seven tweeters, and custom mesh fabric for optimum acoustic performance being a technological breakthrough.
Now, I definitely agree with the fact that Siri on the HomePod is simply not as good as Google Assistant on the Google Home or Alexa on Amazon Echo. However, the main question in my mind is that what do you use your smart speaker for that makes Siri on the HomePod inadequate? I use an Echo Dot hooked to a JBL Bluetooth speaker, and I only use it for streaming music 2-3 times a day. Alexa is good enough to understand my requests most of the time, though it definitely struggles to pick up my voice while the JBL speaker is blasting music at full volume. Apart from that, I use Alexa to check up on the weather and control the smart lights in my office. And sometimes, I use it to send a message to my friend, but that’s about it. I can use Alexa to do a lot more like book an Uber, check my calendar appointments, order a Pizza but I find these skills to be severely limited or just too cumbersome to use. Other people I know using a smart speaker have a usage pattern similar to mine.
I also have access to Google Assistant on my Pixel 2 XL where I frequently use it for setting alarms, creating reminders, calling my friends or family, controlling the smart lights, and playing music. Combining my usage pattern of Alexa and Google Assistant, there really is nothing that I cannot do with Siri on the HomePod. Siri does struggle to understand my Indian accent properly, but I am only talking about the Siri experience on the HomePod here which is currently only available in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. There’s no denying the fact that Siri’s voice recognition ability is simply not as good as that of Google Assistant and Alexa. And that it only works with Apple Music is a bummer as well for many but then Apple’s music library is pretty big so at least you can’t complain about not finding the music you want to listen to.
What about you? How and what makes you find Siri on the HomePod inadequate and less smart when compared to Google Assistant or Alexa? Is it the various restrictions placed by Apple? Or is it the poor voice recognition feature? Take part in our poll and let us know your thoughts by dropping a comment below.