Apple has booted the HomePod out the front door with nothing but a bindle on its back. The pricey smart speaker has been disowned in favour of its smaller, cheaper and more popular younger brother: HomePod mini.
Much like the recent discontinuation of the beloved iMac Pro, Apple is currently still selling the device. However, stock will only keep for as long as supplies last on the Apple Store. At the moment, all Space Grey versions of the device are gone with only that classic Apple White in stock.
Why is Apple killing the HomePod?
Apple’s discontinuation of the HomePod makes a lot of sense. With the runaway success of the far better HomePod mini, the company is redirecting focus to the successful product. While not as feature-packed as the original release, the mini version proved to be far more popular due to its price. The regular release cost $299.99; the mini costs $99.
“We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini,” Apple told TechCrunch. “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.”
Hardcore HomePod defenders will explain that the original device still has merit. For starters, the bigger speaker has noticeably better sound quality. Secondly, Apple’s Home Theatre feature is exclusive to the larger model. Unfortunately, these features still couldn't ship units.
Will Apple still support the speaker?
Apple has stated that they will continue to provide support for the original device. Just like with the iMac Pro, the discontinued speaker will be cared for in the future. Apple has promised future software updates and service through Apple Care.
Unfortunately, that’s all original customers will get. Unlike the addition of home theatre mode a few months ago, there likely won’t be any major additions.