New HomePod Launches Today, Apple Store Pickup Now Available

Apple's second-generation HomePod launches today, with the new smart speaker available for pickup at Apple Stores in the U.S. and select other countries. Online pre-orders also begin arriving to customers today, and pre-ordering is no longer required.

HomePod 2 White and Midnight Feature Purple Blue
Apple customers can use the Apple online store or App Store app to order a ‌HomePod‌ for Apple Store pickup. Simply select the "I'll pick it up" option at checkout, enter your ZIP or postal code, and select the most convenient ‌Apple Store‌ location. Customers can then select a pickup date and 15-minute check-in window.

Priced at $299 and coming‌‌ in Midnight and White color options, the new ‌HomePod‌ looks very similar to the original ‌HomePod‌ that Apple discontinued in 2021, but there are some subtle design changes and several new features.

The second-generation ‌HomePod‌ has a refined design with a larger backlit touch surface and a removable power cable, while inside there are five tweeters (as opposed to seven in the original model), four far-field microphones (as opposed to six), and new temperature and humidity sensors.

The new ‌HomePod‌ is powered by Apple's S7 chip, and comes with Thread support, a U1 Ultra Wideband chip to support music handoff, and Wi-Fi 802.11n connectivity. It also supports Spatial Audio. Two HomePods can be used together to form a stereo pair, but original ‌HomePod‌ owners should note that the new ‌HomePod‌ can't be stereo paired with the first-generation model.

The new $299 ‌HomePod‌ is available from today in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, the UK, the US, and 11 other countries.

Related Roundup: HomePod
Buyer's Guide: HomePod (Buy Now)

Top Rated Comments

User 6502 Avatar
8 weeks ago

5 Ghz WiFi will give a faster connection, but 2.4 Ghz will typically give better signal range, and thus a more stable connection when the HomePod is in a room far from the WiFi router.

Making it 802.11n only was probably a deliberate decision on Apple's part. It'll save a few cents on antennas but also should improve WiFi reliability for most users, in a device that simply doesn't need high bandwidth.
Apple’s reality distortion field hits once again. The home pod uses an outdated Wi-Fi standard just because it’s using a cheaper Watch chip, downgraded from a more expensive iPhone chip of the previous HomePod. It has nothing to do with bandwidth or stability or anything: it’s just apple trying to increase their margins, same thing they did by removing two tweeters and two microphones.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dantracht Avatar
8 weeks ago
I’ll say it again: I’m very glad these are an option again. However, I’ll also say again: not spending another penny on a HomePod until apple fixes HomeKit. When my current fleet work as well as they used to before 16.2 ruined them, I’ll get a pair of these two. Not before.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Reason077 Avatar
8 weeks ago

The original HomePods never give me problem with "Unable to connect to the internet" but HomePod mini always do. I will not get the new HomePod since it's using 802.11n Wi-Fi. Same as HomePod mini. This's so stupid.
5 Ghz WiFi will give a faster connection, but 2.4 Ghz will typically give better signal range, and thus a more stable connection when the HomePod is in a room far from the WiFi router.

Making it 802.11n only was probably a deliberate decision on Apple's part. It'll save a few cents on antennas but also should improve WiFi reliability for most users, in a device that simply doesn't need high bandwidth.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ? Avatar
8 weeks ago
So excited to receive mine. Better yet, it’s coming from Apple’s new distribution center in Indiana.

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Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dantracht Avatar
8 weeks ago

Local store has already slipped to 14th March for the Midnight option. Had availability at 8am this morning so either stores aren’t getting many units in or it has been super popular. I’m going with not many units!
Apple marketing 101.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Duncan-UK Avatar
8 weeks ago
Working near to an Apple shop today, so cracked and bought two (midnight). I now hate myself…
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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