Apple on Tuesday released an iOS 14.3 update for HomePod and HomePod mini, which Apple's release notes said included "general performance and stability improvements," but it actually failed to mention a new feature that allows the head of a household to assign primary users to different HomePods in the same home.

HomePodandMini feature
‌HomePod‌ can automatically recognize voices to personalize music requests, playlists, and recommendations. However, Apple acknowledges that Siri may not always recognize individual voices. Therefore, the new feature allows you to assign a primary user for each ‌HomePod‌, and when ‌Siri‌ fails to recognize the voice of a user, that ‌HomePod‌ will fall back to the primary user to which it has been assigned and carry out the request. Here's how to access the feature and set it up.

  1. Launch the Home app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Press and hold on the ‌HomePod‌ or grouped HomePods that you want to assign a primary user.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom and tap the settings button (the cog icon) in the bottom-right corner of the interface.
    2assign primary user homepod

  4. Under "Music & Podcasts," tap Primary User.
  5. Select the person that you'd like to assign as the Primary User of this ‌HomePod‌ or grouped HomePods. Alternately, select HomePod Account to use the default account used for Apple Music and Podcasts when ‌Siri‌ fails to recognize the voice that made the request.1assign primary user homepod

The feature appears to have been added because Apple recognizes that some homes will have multiple HomePods located in different rooms, some in which particular users may reside more than others – such as in a private bedroom, for example. In other words, if ‌Siri‌ fails to recognize their voice, it can still process their personal request.

The new feature in iOS 14.3 was originally spotted by The 8-bit.

Related Roundups: HomePod, HomePod mini
Buyer's Guide: HomePod Mini (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

imola.zhp Avatar
13 months ago

I have eight HomePods, and they hadn't worked properly in several months, particularly when iOS 14 trashed everything. I ended up removing them all after countless attempts to use the Apple preferred way. While not as good as the HomePods, I picked up a few nest speakers, and they work flawlessly. Yeah, I don't have the whole ecosystem, but in my opinion, Apple has lost some of that advantage due in no small measure to their inability to get their software to work. I was hopeful after installing iOS 14.3, things would calm down and solve some issues. Well, it did allow me to use Contacts and Messages again, but that's about it.

The silver lining is that the iPhone 12 Max and Apple Watch seem to work very well, so there's that.
Weird, we have 4, two regular, two mini's. Haven't had much if any issues before or after iOS 14.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Digital Dude Avatar
13 months ago
I have eight HomePods, and they hadn't worked properly in several months, particularly when iOS 14 trashed everything. I ended up removing them all after countless attempts to use the Apple preferred way. While not as good as the HomePods, I picked up a few nest speakers, and they work flawlessly. Yeah, I don't have the whole ecosystem, but in my opinion, Apple has lost some of that advantage due in no small measure to their inability to get their software to work. I was hopeful after installing iOS 14.3, things would calm down and solve some issues. Well, it did allow me to use Contacts and Messages again, but that's about it.

The silver lining is that the iPhone 12 Max and Apple Watch seem to work very well, so there's that.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MauiPa Avatar
13 months ago

Is there a way to give access to a homepod without giving access to all the other devices? I would like to pick up Minis over time for my daughters but I dont want them to have access to every device in the house.
So they can’t play music. I never heard of that need before. If it is to restrict purchases. Set the require password setting
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
whyamihere Avatar
13 months ago
Meanwhile my Homepod still refuses to even recognize different voices at all. Every few months I get the itch to give it another try and go through all the Apple and various 3rd party site suggested troubleshooting steps to get it working. And every time it ends in the same disappointing inability to recognize different voices. Literally the definition of insanity at this point.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KeithJenner Avatar
13 months ago

I’m confused what this update enables, and the article doesn’t do a great job explaining it. This is for limiting users or giving more people access? As it stands the HomePod already responds to everyone?
Prior to this update, every HomePod had the owner of the home as the primary user. In our house that is me. So, I was the primary user of the HomePod Mini that our son has in his bedroom, and if he asked it to play music then it would play from my library unless his voice was recognised. In fairness, it quite reliably recognised his voice but, for example, if he had a friend round then that persons voice wouldn't be recognised and any request from that person would default to my account.

Now I have been able to designate him as the primary user of that HomePod, meaning that this issue is solved.

It is very useful for us, as we have a couple of Homepods with this situation.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Kebabselector Avatar
13 months ago
I would be nice if you could tune the sound rather than be stuck with only using Airplay for that.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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