Stereo-Like Sound With HomePods Coming Before Multi-Room Audio Feature [Updated]

Apple's technology that will enable a pair of HomePods to automatically detect and balance each other to create stereo-like sound is coming soon, according to Matthew Panzarino, while the HomePod's multi-room audio support via AirPlay 2 will be available at some point later this year.

homepod pair
Both features are currently listed as "coming later this year" on Apple's website, so it was assumed they would be released in tandem.

Emphasis should be placed on stereo-like, as HomePod reviews published today confirm that users won't be able to set one speaker as the right channel and another as the left channel. Instead, as Apple notes, HomePods will use advanced beamforming capabilities to create a more immersive soundstage.

homepod airplay 2 stereo
HomePod launches this Friday in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia, and availability of the speaker is beginning to tighten ahead of time.

Update: An earlier version of this article referred to the more-than-one-HomePod-in-a-room balancing feature as "FullRoom," as mentioned in a few reports, but Apple says that is not the official name of the feature.

Related Roundup: HomePod
Buyer's Guide: HomePod (Caution)

Top Rated Comments

ck2875 Avatar
39 months ago

This thing was announced nearly nine months ago (and in development for who knows how long before the announcement) and they still decided to release it before it was fully baked.

Almost sounds like the baby my sister just popped out.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jav6454 Avatar
39 months ago
So you'll have to shell out $700 + tax for a stereo-like experience? Lol, joke
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
krause734 Avatar
39 months ago
Too expensive for many average people and too cheap for many audiophiles.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JimmyBanks6 Avatar
39 months ago

Meanwhile APFS for Fusion drives is nowhere to be seen.

I don't get posts like this.

Are you so naive to think that the team working on a speaker is the same team working on a file system? Like really, think before posting.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
avanpelt Avatar
39 months ago
'At a later date'. Nice and vague there, Apple. I hope these things sit on store shelves for a while after the initial launch wave subsides. There certainly won't be any in my home, nor will I recommend it to anyone. This thing was announced nearly nine months ago (and in development for who knows how long before the announcement) and they still decided to release it before it was fully baked.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
blacktape242 Avatar
39 months ago
and WHY couldn't they have figured that out at the release???? come on apple, just sounds lazy.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Top Stories 44 Feature

Top Stories: 'Thinner and Lighter' MacBook Air, Smaller iPhone 13 Notch, iOS 14.4 Incoming

Saturday January 23, 2021 6:00 am PST by
We continued to hear a lot more about Apple's plans for its Mac lineup this week, including word of a high-end redesigned MacBook Air and the return of an SD card slot as part of the upcoming MacBook Pro redesign. It also sounds like Apple has been working on Face ID for Mac, but it won't be appearing in a redesigned iMac this year as originally planned. This week also saw rumors about the...
magsafecasedangle

Apple Elaborates on Potential for iPhone 12 and MagSafe Accessories to Interfere With Implantable Medical Devices

Saturday January 23, 2021 2:42 pm PST by
Since the launch of iPhone 12 models in October, Apple has acknowledged that the devices may cause electromagnetic interference with medical devices like pacemakers and defibrillators, but the company has now shared additional information. Apple added the following paragraph to a related support document today:Medical devices such as implanted pacemakers and defibrillators might contain...
Flat MacBook Air Feature

Bloomberg: Apple Working on 'Thinner and Lighter' High-End MacBook Air With MagSafe, Could Launch in Second Half of 2021

Friday January 22, 2021 3:34 am PST by
Apple is working on a "thinner and lighter" version of the MacBook Air that the company plans to release during the second half of this year at the earliest or in 2022, according to a new report by well-connected Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman. It will include Apple's MagSafe charging technology and a next-generation version of the company's in-house Mac processors. Apple has discussed...
2021 mbp sd slot feature2

Bloomberg: Next MacBook Pro to Feature SD Card Reader

Friday January 22, 2021 7:50 am PST by
Last week, reputable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo outlined his expectations for new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models later this year, including the return of the MagSafe charging connector, the removal of the Touch Bar, a new flat-edged design, and the return of more ports built into the notebooks for expanded connectivity. A concept of a modern MacBook Pro with an SD card reader Kuo did not...
airpods galaxy buds comparison

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro

Friday January 22, 2021 2:34 pm PST by
Samsung in January unveiled new flagship Galaxy S21 smartphones and alongside the new phones, introduced the $200 Galaxy Buds Pro, which are priced at $199 and offer Active Noise Cancellation. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. These new Galaxy Buds Pro are clearly designed to compete with Apple's AirPods Pro, so we thought we'd compare the two sets of earbuds in our...
maxresdefault

Microsoft Touts Surface Pro 7 as 'The Better Choice' Over MacBook Pro in New Ad

Saturday January 23, 2021 11:02 am PST by
Microsoft yesterday shared a new ad on YouTube titled "Microsoft Surface Pro 7: The Better Choice," in which the company compares its tablet computer to Apple's 13-inch M1 MacBook Pro, as spotted by MSPoweruser. The ad highlights the Surface Pro 7's touchscreen and included stylus as opposed to only a "little bar" (the Touch Bar) on the MacBook Pro. Other advantages of the Surface Pro 7...
iOS 15 icon mock banner

iOS 15 Rumored to Drop Support for iPhone 6s and 2016 iPhone SE

Thursday January 21, 2021 11:58 am PST by
Apple's upcoming iOS 15 operating system, which we expect to see unveiled in June, is rumored to be dropping support for a few of Apple's older iPhones. According to French site iPhoneSoft, iOS 15 will not be able to be installed on the iPhone 6s, the iPhone 6s Plus, or the 2016 iPhone SE, all of which have an A9 chip. The iPhone 6s and 6s Plus were introduced in 2015 and are now more...
maxresdefault

Video Demos macOS Catalina Running on iPad Pro via x86 Emulation

Thursday January 21, 2021 11:36 am PST by
A video demonstrating macOS Catalina running on a current 2020 iPad Pro has been shared on YouTube, giving us a look at an interesting hack that has a Mac OS up and working on one of Apple's iPads. There's limited information about how the process of getting macOS Catalina on an iPad Pro works, but it uses x86 emulation and was done through the UTM software that allows virtual machines to...
iPhone 13 Notch Feature

iPhone 13 Rumored to Feature Smaller Notch, Pro Model Cameras to Use Larger Image Sensor

Thursday January 21, 2021 1:38 am PST by
Apple's iPhone 13 series will feature a redesigned Face ID system that will allow for a smaller notch at the top of the screen, according to a new report today. The rumor comes via hit-and-miss Taiwanese industry publication DigiTimes, whose supply chain sources also claim that the ultra wide-angle lens in Apple's next-generation iPhones is due for an upgrade. The next-generation iPhones'...
iOS 14

Apple Seeds iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 Release Candidate to Developers and Public Beta Testers

Thursday January 21, 2021 10:14 am PST by
Apple today seeded the RC version of upcoming iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 updates to developers for testing purposes, with the new betas coming a week after Apple released the second betas. iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 can be downloaded through the Apple Developer Center or over the air after the proper profile has been installed on an iPhone or iPad. Paired with the HomePod 14.4 beta that is...