large image

Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Apple cancelled HomePod several times before launch — report

Apple’s forthcoming HomePod was cancelled ‘several times’ during the development stage, according to a report on Tuesday.

Bloomberg sources say the Siri-enabled smart speaker started as a side project back in 2012 and went through various iterations before the eventual form factor was chosen.

In one incarnation the product was a 3-foot tall speaker tower, before the 7-inch design was eventually settled upon.

Perhaps more interestingly, the well-connected reporter, Mark Gurman, said Apple developers were “blindsided” by the arrival of the Amazon Echo in 2014.

According to the report, Apple’s engineers bought the Alexa-powered speaker, took it apart and scoffed at the sound quality compared to its own endeavors to create a speaker that audiophile-approved speaker.

Related: Apple HomePod vs Amazon Echo

However, following Amazon’s launch, Apple reportedly “dithered” while the top brass attempted to figure out how the speaker would fit into the device ecosystem.

Engineers were, Gurman reports, told that the focus was to be on music and sound quality, rather than leveraging the existing Siri assistant to rival Alexa.

According to the report, HomePod remained a side product at Apple, an accessory similar in nature to the AirPods wireless earphones, rather than a fully fledged product category.

That’s an ethos, which appears to have played in the final version of the device product.

HomePod, which has been delayed until 2018, will arrive without the range of first- and third-party abilities Amazon calls “Skills,” making it a tougher sell at $349.


The indecision at Apple could explain why it took the firm three years to announce a rival to the Amazon Echo, which has since gained an almighty lead in the sector.

Apple has also fallen behind Google, which, over the course of the last year, has released a range of Google Home products to rival the ever-growing Echo stable.

As a result, one Apple insider called the delay a “huge missed opportunity” to match rivals in a major new tech battleground.

Apple has not revealed why it is holding back on plans to release HomePod before the holidays.

Last week, the company said it needed a “little more time” to perfect the product. If today’s reports are to be believed, the company has been trying to do just that for more than five years.

Will you be buying HomePod when it arrives in early 2018? Drop us a line @TrustedReviews on Twitter.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.