In short: Apple is reportedly working on a new version of its HomePod speaker as part of an updated smart home strategy. Well-known Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that an upgraded HomePod with a built-in 7-inch display may be introduced as early as the first half of 2024. Kuo said Tianma Microelectronics Co. will be Apple’s exclusive supplier for the displays used in the new HomePod. .
Cupertino apparently hopes that the HomePod with the screen will increase its versatility, leading to closer integration with other hardware products.
Apple introduced the first HomePod 2017 and launched it in February next year. Initial reviews were mixed, which immediately led to low sales. This eventually prompted Apple to discontinue the device in March 2021 after the launch of the smaller and more affordable HomePod Mini.
However, Apple was not going to abandon the full-size HomePod. Earlier this year, the company released a new version of its smart speaker with a 4-inch woofer with a 20 mm stroke, as well as an array of five horn tweeters (each with its own neodymium magnet) and a built-in low-frequency calibration microphone for automatic bass correction. The second-generation HomePod also includes four microphones in the far zone for Siri access and supports spatial sound via Dolby Atmos. It costs $ 50 less than the original — $ 299.
Kuo thinks that Tianma has a great opportunity. Assuming that everything goes well with the displays for the HomePod being developed, the supplier can be asked to provide panels for future iPad models.
Kuo didn’t mention it, but it’s not hard to imagine that a HomePod with a display will support multitouch and will probably be equipped with at least one camera. If it comes to fruition, it could challenge similar devices like the Amazon Echo Show and Meta Portal for market share.