Apple HomePod Mini review: Great sound, but still behind Alexa - Business Insider

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Apple's HomePod Mini can talk to your iPhone in a way that other speakers can't, enabling some exciting features. But it's still expensive.
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Apple's HomePod Mini offers rich sound quality and convenient features that make it a much more compelling sell than its predecessor.

One of its most interesting perks is the ability to quickly transfer audio and other information between your iPhone and the speaker.

But the HomePod Mini is still limited compared to its rivals when it comes to the services and devices it supports.

If you're an iPhone owner willing to pay a bit more for quality audio and convenience, the HomePod Mini is a solid choice — but cheaper speakers from Amazon and Google are still a better deal for most people.

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Roughly five years after Amazon's Echo smart speaker became a household name, Apple is finally catching up.

Apple recently launched its second smart speaker, the Siri-equipped HomePod Mini, which packs impressive sound and useful new communication features into an orb about the size of a softball. With the $99 HomePod Mini, Apple is addressing two of the biggest criticisms that emerged following the original's launch: its high price and lack of compatibility with non-Apple music services.

Those changes, combined with new additions like the ability to function as an in-house intercom system, make the HomePod Mini a much better value and easier sell than its predecessor. Its deep integration with the iPhone really makes it stand out, resulting in a far more seamless experience for tasks, like checking your calendar and sending messages, than on the Echo.

But the HomePod Mini still has some serious drawbacks to overcome, such as its higher price and smaller selection of compatible smart home devices compared to rival speakers from Amazon and Google. But most importantly, it's still not possible to request music playback from Spotify using your voice, putting the HomePod Mini at a…
Lisa Eadicicco
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