My experience with Apple’s HomePod has come to an end just as it began – with a whimper.
It took a week, but Apple Support was able to solve my Error 6722 problem.
As I previously detailed, I was excited to get my HomePod up and running exactly two weeks ago. But then I hit a huge snag – error 6722. I couldn’t set up the smart speaker using any of my existing iOS devices.
Because of an apparent encryption problem with my iCloud account, my HomeKit and the Home app wasn’t working and was stuck on a “Loading Accessories and Scenes” screen. Since the HomePod needs HomeKit to function correctly, I was stuck with a $349 not-so-smart paperweight.
After a number of calls to Apple Support, the issue was escalated to engineering with no apparent timeframe for when or if the problem would ever be solved.
But last weekend, on a whim, I decided to open up the Home app on my iPhone. Instead of the dreaded white screen, I was greeted with the usual Home app. All of my HomeKit devices needed to be set up again, but that was an easy fix. More importantly, I could set up my HomePod.
A Great Speaker that is Not so Smart
In it's current form, the HomePod isn't much more than an "accessory" for Apple Music.
So I’ve been able to actually use my HomePod for almost a week. And in that time, I’ve put the speaker through its paces and have come to a simple conclusion.
On the hardware design sound, Apple has absolutely hit it out of the park. Everything else is an enormous work in progress. And the future of the HomePod will depend on Apple making some huge improvements to the “smart” side of the smart speaker equation.
First up, the speaker produces some wonderful sound. While I’m not an audiophile, the HomePod sounds leaps and bounds better than any of the Amazon Echo line or the Google Home. It’s not even close.
While I’m not an audiophile, the HomePod sounds leaps and bounds better than any of the Amazon Echo line or the Google Home. It’s not even close.
There’s a wide variety of musical tastes in my house, everything from country to hard rock, and the HomePod has produced a wonderful soundstage for every piece of audio I tried. Yes, the bass might be a bit on the heavy side for some, but everything else excels.
The stumbling block comes when trying to wade through everything else. Siri does a great job controlling Apple Music, but not anything else.
Even when trying to interact with HomeKit devices, the virtual assistant would either completely refuse to cooperate or say that a specific device couldn’t be found when it was right there in the Home app. And beyond that, what the HomePod doesn’t have is disappointing as well. From the lack of multi-user support to the inability to set two timers simultaneously, HomePod has a long way to go. Amazon’s Alexa is substantially more capable at this point.
The HomePod problems are hard to overlook and something that mars the entire experience, especially for the $349 price tag. So my HomePod is sitting packed up and ready to go back to Best Buy.
If you’re a huge Apple Music fan and want the best sounding speaker out there for your music, definitely take a look at the HomePod. Everyone else can wait and see.
Or you can go purchase an Amazon Echo. While you’ll definitely not get as good of sound, you’ll save a huge amount of cash and be able to see what the technology is truly capable of right now.
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