Earlier this year, Apple announced that it would be releasing its first smart speaker called the HomePod in late 2017. If you were holding out for one of these new devices, you will have to wait a little bit longer.
The company announced today that they will be delaying the HomePod until early 2018 by releasing the following statement:
We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod, Apple’s breakthrough wireless speaker for the home, but we need a little more time before it’s ready for our customers. We’ll start shipping in the US, UK and Australia in early 2018.”
There are a few things to note here about this, the first is that the delay pushes this past the holiday shopping season. For Apple, this may not be a big deal as their products tend to sell well no matter when they are released but it does make you wonder what the issue is with the device.
Considering it was announced with a six-month window to finalize and build the product, the issues must have been serious to warrant this move. But on the other hand, this is a good thing (for those who are buying it) for the consumer as shipping a buggy product is worse than not shipping one at all.
What this does mean though is that Google, Amazon and even Microsoft will have digital home assistants for sale this year and that Apple will be late to the party. Does that matter? Likely not, as the company will still sell millions of phones and tablets with Siri baked into the hardware.
The company is not giving an exact timeline for release but it doesn’t look like, at least from the announcement today, that the product is delayed a significant amount of time.