Stereo-Like Sound With HomePods Coming Before Multi-Room Audio Feature [Updated]

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 6, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple's technology that will enable a pair of HomePods to automatically detect and balance each other to create stereo-like sound is coming soon, according to Matthew Panzarino, while the HomePod's multi-room audio support via AirPlay 2 will be available at some point later this year.


    Both features are currently listed as "coming later this year" on Apple's website, so it was assumed they would be released in tandem.

    Emphasis should be placed on stereo-like, as HomePod reviews published today confirm that users won't be able to set one speaker as the right channel and another as the left channel. Instead, as Apple notes, HomePods will use advanced beamforming capabilities to create a more immersive soundstage.


    HomePod launches this Friday in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia, and availability of the speaker is beginning to tighten ahead of time.

    Update: An earlier version of this article referred to the more-than-one-HomePod-in-a-room balancing feature as "FullRoom," as mentioned in a few reports, but Apple says that is not the official name of the feature.

    Article Link: Stereo-Like Sound With HomePods Coming Before Multi-Room Audio Feature [Updated]
  2. blacktape242 macrumors 65816


    Dec 17, 2010
    Sacramento, CA
    and WHY couldn't they have figured that out at the release???? come on apple, just sounds lazy.
  3. avanpelt macrumors 68030

    Jun 2, 2010
    'At a later date'. Nice and vague there, Apple. I hope these things sit on store shelves for a while after the initial launch wave subsides. There certainly won't be any in my home, nor will I recommend it to anyone. This thing was announced nearly nine months ago (and in development for who knows how long before the announcement) and they still decided to release it before it was fully baked.
  4. JimmyBanks6 macrumors member


    Oct 4, 2017
    I'm in the market for a new pair of speakers right now [and an integrated amp as well].

    But a requirement is that I need to be able to play from my turntable, and without any way to use the speaker other than through iCloud Music or Apple Music, unfortunately I can't even consider the HomePod.

    Too bad, the reviews all seem impressed by the sound quality.
  5. scrapesleon macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2017
    Don’t really care when they release it I just need my HomePod asap so my House is finally complete
  6. mtneer macrumors 68030


    Sep 15, 2012
    So how will the speaker know where the listener is each time it turns on? I imagine that would be a great part of the "immersive sound stage" experience.
  7. krause734 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 30, 2010
    Too expensive for many average people and too cheap for many audiophiles.
  8. filmantopia macrumors 6502a


    Feb 5, 2010
    I believe after a few updates HomePod is going to be a formidable product in this space. No doubt Apple will be rapidly evolving its capabilities on an already solid foundation of great hardware.
  9. ck2875 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 25, 2009
    Almost sounds like the baby my sister just popped out.
  10. JeffyTheQuik macrumors 68020


    Aug 27, 2014
    Charleston, SC and Everett, WA
    Dumb question...

    Are Apple TV 4K Airplay 2 compatible? I've only used mine as an Airplay recipient.

    It'd be nice to have 7 of these around the room for that immersive sound.
  11. macguru212 macrumors regular


    Apr 17, 2009
  12. whooleytoo macrumors 604


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    Maybe this explains the employee 50% discounts on HomePods..

    "Buy two (for the price of one!). Oh, and if you get them working together, let us know how, please?"

  13. mcdspncr macrumors regular


    Jul 2, 2011
    The tech specs on the Apple website state that audio from an Apple TV can play over the HomePod via AirPlay. I wonder if this would be reliable enough and low latency enough for TV and Netflix? Wish the HomePod also included an audio jack so it could be plugged into a traditional TV as well. That might justify getting 2 of them for someone in the market for new home theater speakers, and doesn’t want to wire up a proper 5.1 surround system.
  14. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    So you'll have to shell out $700 + tax for a stereo-like experience? Lol, joke
  15. triangletechie macrumors regular

    Apr 21, 2017
    Since AirPlay 2 is releasing later, hopefully that means "Full Room" comes out with the next round of OS updates.
  16. nsayer macrumors 6502a


    Jan 23, 2003
    Silicon Valley
    Meanwhile APFS for Fusion drives is nowhere to be seen.
  17. rikscha macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2010
    They are but it is not given that they will produce synchronous sound?

    I would otherwise consider replacing my current setup with two of those

  18. JimmyBanks6 macrumors member


    Oct 4, 2017
    I don't get posts like this.

    Are you so naive to think that the team working on a speaker is the same team working on a file system? Like really, think before posting.
  19. PictorGuy macrumors newbie

    Sep 28, 2016
    I want one. I really do. Apple is making it very hard for me to buy into it.
  20. avanpelt macrumors 68030

    Jun 2, 2010
    So, by mocking me, you're defending Apple's decision to release a product that, at launch (and who knows how longer after launch), won't be able to do two things that Apple proudly touted at WWDC last June, I take it?
  21. gnomeisland macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2008
    New York, NY
    Several reviewers have tried, and, yes it does work. It isn't true 5.1 and if you stream something else or play some Apple Music the HomePod doesn't revert back to playing from the TV so you have to reselect it as the audio output for the Apple TV. So, yes, with caveats.
  22. roncron macrumors 6502


    Aug 15, 2011
    "Stereo-like sound?" This sounds a bit gimmicky, like the feature on 1990s boomboxes that made the "stereo" sound wider and more "exciting". I'll listen with an open mind when HomePods actually get this feature (why isn't it available upon release??), but for now, I'm skeptical.

    What if you buy two HomePods and want true stereo sound, to hear the mix the way the artists intended it to be heard? Will that even be an option?

    Like others have said, casual listeners probably won't want to spend $700 for a pair and audiophiles will probably want a true stereo not "stereo-like sound".
  23. ck2875, Feb 6, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018

    ck2875 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 25, 2009
    Wasn't mocking you, fwiw. I don't know if you interpreted what I said as me saying you sound like a crying baby or what, but I was just genuinely amused at how your description of releasing something prematurely lined up with my sister's pregnancy.

    I completely agree that it's annoying that those features aren't ready at launch despite the delay from "late 2017." I'm curious what they're having issues with if they are able to demo the "stereo" for reviewers in controlled environments. Apple definitely announced it way too early imho, but probably felt pressured to have some answer to Amazon's Echo success.
  24. TheHateMachine macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2012
    Santa Fe, TX
    B-b-but muh beam forming!
  25. Saipher macrumors demi-god


    Oct 25, 2014
    It would be awesome to use a couple of HomePods in FullRoom mode as speakers when watching a movie/show on Apple TV. Maybe surround sound with mutiple HomePods? Does anyone know if that's in the pipeline?

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