It appears Apple’s HomePod smart speaker isn’t selling as well as the company predicted. The tech giant has been forced to admit defeat and cut orders with suppliers, according to a new report from Bloomberg.
Was Apple simply too late to the party?
When Apple’s HomePod went on sale in January, having missed its original December release date, and the crucial holiday shopping season, many feared Apple was simply too late and had already missed the smart speaker boat. It seems they might have been right as so many already had their hands on an Amazon Echo, or a Google Home. It is not uncommon for Apple to enter the race late, only to overtake their competition with a far more advanced product, however, the HomePod has not had the same impact, and has not dominated the smart speaker market as some predicted it would.
Apple failed to deliver on its promises
As Bloomberg points out, pre-orders were particularly high initially and by the last week of January, the device dominated about one-third of the US smart speaker market. However, by March, Apple had already lowered its sales forecasts and dropped some orders with the manufacturer of HomePod, Inventec. Some stores have reportedly sold less than 10 HomePods a day, and the HomePod is currently selling for $349, making it the most expensive smart speaker currently on the market.
Apple promotes the device’s superior sound quality, however, as the product can only be used with Apple Music, many potential buyers are put off the product. It is also dependent on the iPhone and “is limited as a digital assistant”. The HomePod promised a lot more than it currently delivers, including the ability to pair two HomePods together and AirPlay 2 support which would allow you to control the music on multiple HomePods from different rooms of the house.
Despite its lacklustre sales, Apple is unlikely to give up on the HomePod completely anytime soon.