Last year at WWDC Apple announced its first smart speaker dubbed as HomePod. The device allowed Apple to go in direct competition with the likes of Google and Amazon. However, as it turned out, not many people bought the device. This was probably because of delayed shipment, pricing and the fact that it only supported Apple devices.
However, according to the latest report, Apple might be planning to launch a new affordable version of HomePod. The new HomePods will cost around $199 and will be made in partnership with Beats Audio. At this price, Apple might be able to capture some market share which is currently dominated by Amazon and Google. According to a recent report from Strategy Analytics Apple has only shipped around 600,000 HomePods in Q1-2018. These numbers are not great and Apple has kept their mouths shut regarding the official HomePod numbers.
There are two things which Apple needs to address right now which are reducing costs and adding support for Android. Other than this, Apple still needs to work on third-party apps integration and improving Siri, which is widely perceived to be far inferior to Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Assistant. However, WWDC is not that far so we will soon see what the company has planned for us. For now, take this leak with a pinch of salt.