Skip to main content

HomePod problems Apple should fix

Apple is at the top of the chain when it comes to future-forward devices. The company’s smart speaker, the HomePod, launched in 2018, and customers hoped it would live up to the Amazon Echo and Google Home. But this device doesn’t excite all of Apple’s loyal customers, as there are many HomePod problems the multibillion-dollar company has yet to address.

Sound quality isn’t that great

Users don’t just want a speaker to play music aloud but to play it with exceptional quality, too. Although the Apple HomePod isn’t notorious for delivering poor bass and surpasses most Bluetooth speakers, its sound quality doesn’t live up to the likes of Sonos.

HomePod’s default setting is bass-heavy, which might not be suitable for everyone, especially those who prefer slow-tempo songs. You have limited options for customizing the sound, and one major issue is that the device lacks user-adjustable EQ controls. You can’t center the frequency, adjust the bass levels, or widen or narrow the area. However, you can get around this by taking advantage of AirPlay and using the EQ controls on the other device, like an iPhone or Mac.

Its features are limited

Image used with permission by copyright holder

A smart speaker is great for hands-free access to your phone’s features, such as creating a calendar appointment, playing games, ordering a pizza, and more. One major HomePod problem is that its features are limited to sending and reading text messages, calling friends, adding reminders, creating notes, and a few other tasks.

The device isn’t great for answering random questions, either, such as trivia questions, playing games, or telling jokes like some other smart speakers. Its restrictions make the HomePod’s purpose slightly confusing, other than being a gloried speaker with a few bonuses.

It doesn’t offer external connections

You may wish to charge your smartphone while operating a smart speaker; however, the HomePod doesn’t have any external connections. This flaw also presents problems if you want to connect to an Android smartphone or computer since only Apple devices are compatible with this unit.

It’s biased toward Apple music

You can use the HomePod for music streaming services such as Spotify, Amazon Unlimited, Pandora, and others, directly from your Apple device, but these platforms are only limited to AirPlay and won’t play through Siri. You can only use Siri to request playing music through iTunes and Apple Music. But doing this requires having a history of songs you’ve purchased from iTunes or by signing up for Apple Music. However, Google Home supports more third-party streaming platforms.

Design flaw

Apple Homepod
Greg Mombert/Digital Trends

The device’s design is minimalist, which is attractive for some and down to personal preference, plus the plastic exterior securely encases the electrical components. Its display is located at the top, meaning that when you say “Hey Siri,” you’re unable to see the notification indicator if you’re sitting down. This isn’t a problem if you’re standing, as you can easily see the display light up when you communicate to Siri. If you notice your request hasn’t been accepted by Siri, you’ll want to assess if this is because of a listening error or another malfunction.

Amazon Echo has a ring of light that’s easier to see. In the HomePod’s defense, the microphone is highly responsive, so more often than not, it won’t have issues picking up your voice, but a visual prompt would be desirable.

It isn’t compatible with wooden furniture

Thinking of storing your speaker on wooden furniture? Think again. Once you’ve found a place for your speaker, you won’t likely move it unless there’s an issue with the connection or if you’re cleaning the furniture underneath. However, many customers discovered a white ring on their wooden furniture from the outline of the speaker’s base. This is caused by oils released from the speaker vibrating against a wooden surface. Fortunately, you can remove the marks with a dry, soft cloth or avoid the issue altogether by playing on an alternative surface.

Limitations with non-HomeKit devices

Smart speakers are a common tool for controlling smart appliances in homes. The HomePod is compatible with HomeKit devices, allowing you to control them through Siri. The issue lies with the limited smart gadgets HomeKit offers. But you can’t connect non-HomeKit devices, such as Nest’s Thermostat and more.

Apple’s solution is for customers to purchase HomeKit accessories directly from their store; however, these are more expensive than Alexa-compatible devices and lack a wide range. Plus, if you already have smart appliances installed in your home, you’ll need to renew all of them to connect to your HomePod.

Editors' Recommendations

Amy Poole
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Echo Hub vs. Echo Show 8: Which is the best option for your smart home?
An Echo Hub mounted on the wall near a living room.

The Echo Hub and Echo Show 8 (3rd Gen) are two of the newest products to join the Amazon catalog. Both are designed with large touchscreens and make it easy to access the Alexa voice assistant, connected smart gadgets, and your favorite apps. But while the two share a few similarities, there are big differences between the Echo Hub and Echo Show 8.

Here's a closer look at the Echo Hub and Echo Show 8 to help you decide which is best for your smart home.
Pricing and design

Read more
What is the Amazon Echo Hub?
A person using the Amazon Echo Hub.

Amazon already has a robust lineup of smart displays, but the new Echo Hub is something entirely different. While it looks a bit like an Echo Show, the Echo Hub isn't a smart display -- it's a smart home hub designed to be mounted directly on your wall.

Unlike the Echo and Echo Show products, the Echo Hub isn’t a tabletop device. In fact, you'll need to pay extra for an optional stand just so you can place it on your table or countertop. That's because the Echo Hub is a smart control panel, not a smart speaker or smart display. Amazon bills the Echo Hub as "an Alexa-enabled control panel for your smart home devices." After getting it mounted to your wall, it'll sync up with the rest of your smart home and make it easy to control your various gadgets via its touchscreen.

Read more
The most common Google Nest Mini problems and how to fix them
A coral Google Nest Mini mounted on a brick wall.

The Google Nest Mini (2nd Gen) is one of the best smart speakers of 2024. Despite its low price, the Nest Mini gives you full access to Google Assistant, provides surprisingly great audio for a device its size, and is compact enough to fit nearly anywhere in your home. Whether you want to listen to music, dish out commands to other smart devices, or check the news, the Nest Mini can do it all.

However, the Nest Mini isn't without its faults. Setting up and using the smart speaker is typically a straightforward, hassle-free experience. But like all electronics, some owners have noticed strange issues when performing simple tasks — such as connectivity problems or an unresponsive unit.

Read more