Apple clarifies which audio sources are supported on HomePod speakers

Enlarge (credit: Apple)

Since Apple’s HomePod became available for preorder last week, there has been confusion about the music it can play. Apple recently added an “audio sources” section to HomePod’s tech spec webpage that lays out exactly where you can play music from using the smart speaker. These are the supported sources:

  • Apple Music (subscription required)
  • iTunes Music purchases
  • iCloud Music Library with an Apple Music or iTunes Match subscription
  • Beats 1 Live Radio
  • Podcasts
  • Content via AirPlay to HomePod from iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV, and Mac

It’s not surprising that nearly all of these sources draw music from Apple’s ecosystem. HomePod was always going to prioritize Apple-approved music before all other types, but that will make it harder for users who don’t dwell in Apple’s ecosystem to use HomePod regularly.

Siri voice commands should work with all music sources except content accessed via AirPlay. It appears Siri has limited integration on HomePod right now, and in terms of music, Apple will likely keep Siri controlling only music that the company provides. AirPlay appears to be the best way for users to stream music that isn’t controlled by Apple, such as Spotify or Pandora, to a HomePod speaker (it’s still unclear if HomePod can be used as a Bluetooth speaker). When the AirPlay 2 protocol launches later this year, users will be able to stream audio to multiple HomePods and other AirPlay 2 compatible speakers.

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Source:: Arstechnica – Gadgets