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Discussion in 'Apple' started by DaveF, Jan 29, 2018.
Dude. StereoPod is awesome. Just sayin'
My two new ones are sitting here unopened too. I can wait until next week.
No, I'm not.
The central core of Google's business is collecting data on its "customers". Apple collects an extremely small amount of customer data and what it does collect is trivial and of no threat to anyone's privacy.
Well that's cool that they slim down some data collection, but I don't trust Apple to "do the right thing" any more than I would Google. You log a device into the net and you will be tracked or your data will be collected and used in some form or fashion. Apple devices are no "safer" to use than a Google device IMO.
You have a right to your opinion, but the facts are that
Apple collects much less data than Google
Apple uses it primarily for internal purposes to sell you their products and improve how their products/services meet your needs, versus Google who will give (sell) your data to many more partners for revenue, many of whom you never agreed to share your data with
Every company will act in its self interest. But those of us in the Apple ecosystem are pretty much in it fairly deeply. I don't know anyone who owns just one Apple device. Most I know own several (phone, watch, computer or tablet). So we know Apple has our data and uses it to sell us more Apple products, and to improve Apple products to better meet our needs.
I use Google Maps. I'm not comfortable with suddenly my Google Maps making guesses as to where I go (which my phone app did...and got wrong) and ads related to some of those places start appearing on my Chrome browser.
To me they're not in the same ballpark in terms of trustworthiness and security of your data, in terms of 3rd party companies they share your data with.
Ironically...a quick Google search will confirm what Mark and I wrote.
I'd rather not sidetrack this thread into a Google v Apple data privacy issue. If you want to create a new thread about that, please do. I'm going back to our regularly scheduled programming of celebrating the HomePod that it seems many people are getting for the holidays!
Just be sure not to steal someone else's HomePod...
I love that video! Well done to the guy who built that!!
I don't know of anyone in my circles who own or have asked for any HomePods. But many have or are saying they want an Echo or Mini. I don't see Homepods flying off shelves with their limited offerings and price point.
I'm tempted to get the Google Home Hub, but I already own 3 mini's and an original Home. But for $129 it's a real steal. For the price of one HomePod I could outfit 3 rooms at home with the Google Hub.
I'm not one to want to stifle the free exchange of ideas or opinions. But, frankly, it perplexes me why some people have a tendency to hang out in a topic about products (or company) that they don't care for (products they don't even own) and then continue to post their negative opinion about those products.
Why not hang out in the topics for the products they like (and own) and continue to sing their praises?
It's impossible to have a discussion about Apple products without people that have NO VESTED INTEREST in the products showing up to spew their hate and discontent. It happens in EVERY forum, not just here.
In fact, at least according to this test, Siri (HomePod) is now actually better than Alexa (Echo). But even for those doubting it, what is hard to dispute from their testing is that Siri has been improving at a much faster rate than all its competitors. Clearly they should have launched this level/pace of work on Siri a lot sooner, but if you want to look at the future, buying an Amazon speaker now "because Siri is bad" is a poor decision.
As I’ve said before, sound quality was my main reason for buying the HomePod. But I figured Apple would improve Siri. They put an A8 processor in there and it has nothing to do but play music and run Siri.
By including an A8 Apple gave itself room to make Siri smarter. And while they do that, HomePods are going to sound great because of the speaker design and R&D behind it. Meanwhile, other speakers with lower sound quality are going to be stuck there because of the limits of their speaker and enclosure design and engineering. Siri may one day catch up to Alexa and Google Assistant. But those echoes, dots, etc will never sound as good as the HomePod (in their current hardware iterations).
I've got no complaints about Siri via my HomePod. There are certain types of queries that Siri can't answer but, as noted by Ted's link above, Siri is getting better. And now that we have CarPlay in both of our Mazdas, Siri is the bomb. Siri is lightning fast under CarPlay.
As Carlo points out, HomePod's real competitor is something along the lines of a Sonos Play 3. The Play 3 is $500 and you'd still need an Echo Dot to make it a "smart" speaker.
At $249, the HomePod is a serious bargain right now. Even if the Play 3 was $200 I'd still pick HomePod. No way I'm letting Google or Amazon have microphones in my home. I don't trust them.
I guess that's where we differ. I never bought my Google Home or mini's with the intention of making it a top notch music speaker. It's main use is to assist with smart home stuff, Q&A school stuff, etc. Oh sure, I've played a song here and there and it sounds fine for my needs, but my main set up is a full featured stereo so I don't need $600 worth of portable speakers to recreate the stereo sound experience. If I wanted that, I'd just buy a decent sound only BT speaker set up.
We do indeed differ. My main rig (two of them) are a 5.1 and 7.1 system. But I refuse to buy something that sounds poor when replaying music even on a casual level. The HomePod let me retain very good sounding music that integrated with my Apple Music and answered most any question I threw at it. There are times when I want to power up the rigs and do critical listening. There are other times when I just want some light listening while I’m doing something else, and that’s when the HomePods kick in. But in either case I want good sound quality. Because mediocre (or worse, bad) sound quality is like nails on a chalkboard for me.
Looks like we differ on two different things.
I don't find the audio coming from the Home to be at all "nails on a chaulboard" for casual listening. Heck even the Mini's do the job for us. We aren't audio snobs so to speak.
Might want to be careful with using labels like audio snobs. A good number of us here at Home Theater Forum care about sound quality. That’s kind of the point of this forum. I don’t wander into car forums and call them car snobs.
Well, DAMN all of those great Christmas HomePod prices anyway! At $250 I couldn't resist some experimentation, so I picked up two in Space Gray. I've only listened to one of them so far but yes, the sound quality is lovely. I'm not sure I'm going to keep them so will hold off on opening the second one until I can play around some more. I certainly don't NEED these devices, but like most of Apple's products they exude quality, and I'm drawn to them.
I set up one of the new HomePods in the dinning room. The other is set up for the patio but not sitting out there yet. I want to devise some sort of waterproof enclosure that can secure it in place on a shelf and keep it dry, but with an easily removed top/lid/box that will open it up for full sound potential.
Now that I've got four of them, I did some experimenting with Siri voice control today. FINALLY it all works the way it should. I tried "Hey Siri, play Christmas music in kitchen and bedroom" and only those two speakers were active. Then I tried in kitchen, dinning room and patio and only those three were active. Then I started a song on just a single HomePod (kitchen) and then told Siri to play the song in the bedroom and dinning room too. BINGO... all three speakers were active and everyone was in sync, right from the middle of the song. Sweet!
That is WAY better than it worked a year ago. I be a happy camper now!
I read on another forum that Nebraska Furniture Mart was selling HomePods for $200 before Christmas. Their website is now sold out (they won't even show up in a search). Nebraska Furniture Mart is a MASSIVE retailer in Omaha. I've been there multiple times and I wish they had a location in SoCal.
That Nebraska Furniture Mart deal was great, but they only ship to a limited number of states. I was unable to order one at the time because they don't ship to Arizona.
John Gruber in his latest The Talk Show podcast claims that Apple sells HomePods at a loss (and 4K AppleTVs at cost). His alleged source are anonymous Apple employees: "birdies". See: https://www.macrumors.com/2019/02/01/homepod-apple-tv-apple-cost/
I have no knowledge or opinion, but it is an interesting perspective. (I'm pretty sure Gruber said similar things about the cost of AirPods when they first came out - the fact that real third party competitors to the AirPod never materialized may indicate he was right).
Has anyone contemplating HomePods taken a look at the SVS Wireless Prime Speakers?
My verdict is that without a sub a pair of Homepods beat it out, but with a sub there is no touching the beef that the system provides plus the number of ins and outs they support might be compelling for some of your use cases.
So Gruber re-iterated his HomePod/AppleTV (low) prices claim in the latest Talk Show episode: https://daringfireball.net/thetalkshow/2019/02/15/ep-243
Also in the last section of the podcast, there is a discussion of the Eero purchase and why leaving the AirPort business was such a bad move on Apple's part.