Apple’s new second-generation HomePod appears to have a large backlog of pre-orders, with the shipping date for Apple’s latest smart speaker being delayed by seven weeks in certain markets.
Apple recently introduced a new HomePod speaker for $2,299. The design is slightly updated with an S7 chip for faster performance, “more advanced” computing audio, a larger backlit touch surface, and other new features. Pre-orders for the new HomePod 2nd generation have been open for less than a week since it was announced.
“HomePod (2nd generation) is a powerful smart speaker with a beautiful signature design that brings a next-generation acoustic experience to users. HomePod brings together a number of Apple innovations and Siri intelligence to deliver advanced computational audio technology and support for immersive spatial audio tracks for an unprecedented listening experience. HomePod brings a convenient new way to manage everyday tasks and control your smart home, so users can use Siri to create smart home automation features, get notifications when smoke or carbon monoxide alarms are triggered in your home, or check the temperature and humidity in a room – all without having to do anything. “
In the U.S., the midnight-colored HomePod is now estimated to ship in three to four weeks, much later than the HomePod’s launch date of Friday, Feb. 3. However, there is no delay for the white HomePod. In the U.K., the midnight-colored HomePod faces a five- to six-week shipping delay. In other markets, such as Germany, both colors of the new HomePod are facing delays of more than a month. In China, the Midnight color is expected to ship between February 22 and March 1, with a delay of nearly four weeks at the latest.
The updated HomePod second generation was launched about two years after Apple discontinued the initial HomePod smart speaker. The original HomePod didn’t have the market success Apple had hoped for several reasons, including the speaker’s high price of $349 at launch and limited functionality. Apple’s new HomePod second generation is its latest attempt to grow in the smart home market, which Google and Amazon have dominated for several years.