Originally Posted by RamGuy
EDIT: Another key aspect with the HomePod is how it sounds from different directions? Putting people blindfolded right in front of the speakers puts the HomePod at a disadvantage as this is not its ideal setting....
Only if you place the Home Pod smack in the middle of the room and circle around it.... But most people place their speaker(s) along a wall and much of the sound one hears is reflection. Google specifically mentions that it uses the always on microphones on the Home Max to continuously adjust for such reflections. My guess is that Apple does something similar. It would also appear that neither equalizes the lower frequencies much, since many of the reviews for both mention boomy bass.
I am also surprised by the preference for the Sonos One, as I've never been much enamoured with their sound, but perhaps the mids of the smaller (and much cheaper) Sonos make up for it's relative lack of bass, or its bass is simply better controlled.
Originally Posted by duckymomo
Pandora has nowhere close to 80 million paid subscribers, which is what we're talking about with Apple Music and Spotify.
... My guess is that millions of Apple Music users will be more then happy to add another Apple product to their home that works natively in the Apple ecosystem without having to use an additional app.
As for the pair of Sonos Ones being better for "most" users, it depends on where they place the speakers and how they use them. ...
Why did I bring it up? I described how I use the Homepod and that I don't need it for home automation.
Wow! Crestron, Lutron and the others ARE the institutional and commercial market. It's not a matter of them "surviving for a bit longer".
There are over 2.3 million homes in the US that are worth over a million dollars, and that number is growing rapidly. There will always be a need for high-end home automation that's extremely reliable, fully customizable, doesn't require constant user interaction, and has the look and finish options to match.
You do realize that you can use Google and Alexa with almost all of them? It doesn't change the need for a quality and robust underlining automation system.
I am not sure what is the point of discussing Apple's marketing strategy, or whether Pandora's 80 million subscribers are paying or not (Pandora has been getting most of its revenue from ad sales, so in effect, even the free accounts bring in revenue).
The subject here is the Home Pod on its own merits, and my whole point is that the absurd pronouncements about its sound quality are not reflected in reputable reviews or the blind tests conducted by The Washington Post and David Pogue. Add to this the limited Siri implementation and incompatibility with the major streaming services, and yes, it is a niche market.
You are also making conflicting "real" automation arguments. I am only familiar with Crestron and their very recent Google Assistant integration is way dumber than even the Home Pod's Siri: it allows only basic lights control, which is a major step down for anyone with smart light bulbs and an Alexa or Google Home. Which is kind of my point why AI automation will eventually replace these proprietary systems....
Moreover, "million dollar homes" are the norm in parts of the country, and in most you are more likely to find whole-house audio systems than Crestron automation. To boot, the Crestron app natively supports Sonos, but not the Home Pod, so I am at a loss as to why you think that all these "real automation" owners will flock to the Home Pod, instead of to Sonos.
For the record, I am an Apple fan and own more Apple products than most. I would be a prime audience for the Home Pod, but it just doesn't check the minimum functionality boxes I expect. And I am reacting mostly to the hyperbole about the sound quality, which is soaring a bit too high.
I'll give this a rest now.