The Apple HomePod is not the hot seller that Apple expected. Unlike the AirPods, Apple Watch and Apple Music which did very well for Apple the HomePod has been a tough sell for the company.
Unlike the Amazon Echo and the Google Home which sell multiple devices for between $25-$99 dollars, the HomePod was priced at $349. Apple has now dropped the price to $299. While the $50 dollar price decrease shows that Apple is willing to lower prices to get the device to move I don’t think the HomePod can compete in functionality.
To start Apple has and I don’t think ever will open Siri up for developers to build skills as Amazon and Google have done. Even if Apple did open Siri up for skills development the HomePod has such a small market share I am not sure it would attract developers to the platform. I would like to point out that Cortana had the same problem getting skills because Microsoft had such a small market share with Cortana.
I think it’s important to remember that the Apple HomePod is a premium speaker and is cheaper than some of its competitors like Sono’s Play 5 at $499 or Google’s Home Max which sells for $399. Apple dropping the price may have been a play to be the cheapest speaker in the premium market.
The only thing that is personally holding me back from purchasing the device is how limited it is to the Apple ecosystem. While I use Apple Music, I can buy a $199 dollar Sonos speaker or use my Amazon Echo now that Apple Music is available on the Amazon Echo devices. The HomePod is a hard purchase for me to justify even at the $299 price point. I just don’t see the value I will get out of it for the price I am paying.