Apple expanded its HomePod mini lineup with three new colors back in October, and now we’re seeing the first discount on the entire family. B&H Photo has all of the HomePod mini colors, including the new orange, blue and yellow configurations, for $95 each. That’s $5 off their normal price and, while a modest discount, it’s one of the best we’ve seen on the tiny smart speaker.
The HomePod mini is Apple’s main smart speaker now that it discontinued the original HomePod (although the company still supports that speaker with software updates). It’s also the most compact of the $100 smart speakers, its competition being the Amazon Echo and the Google Nest Audio. It’s a capable device and, like other Apple accessories, arguably best for those who have many Apple products and use services like Apple Music. In addition to its cute design, we liked it for its easy setup and Siri’s prowess with music controls. The voice assistant promptly plays Apple Music albums, playlists and tracks when you ask it too, and you can AirPlay audio from almost any other app (like Spotify and Prime Music) to the HomePod mini. So while the speaker is most convenient for Apple Music subscribers, anyone can use it pretty easily.
Despite being the smallest of the $100 smart speakers, the HomePod mini holds its own against the Nest Audio when it comes to sound quality. Mids and highs are clear and the speaker’s passive radiators help deliver forceful bass. Its “computational audio” feature helps out by adjusting sound accordingly based on what type of music you’re playing. You can also pair two HomePod minis together for stereo sound, and they sound even better this way.
However, if you’re looking for the best sounding device at $100, we recommend going for Amazon’s Echo instead. Siri also lags a bit behind Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Assistant when it comes to smart home control — it’s harder to find HomeKit-supported gadgets than it is to find devices that support either Amazon’s or Google’s voice assistants. But those are relatively small cons if you’re looking for a solid, compact smart speaker, particularly one that shines with Apple Music and works well with Apple devices. And if you’ve been holding out for one of the latest colors, we expect B&H’s sale to be one of the better options this holiday shopping season.
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