Apple HomePod Mini Review 2024 | Complete Guide

Smart home technology is almost everywhere, but if you want to add some smarts to your home, figuring out a new technology can be daunting and may require research. Fortunately, iPhone users have the Apple HomePod mini as a simple option. Because of its sleek design and compatibility with Apple devices, the Apple HomePod mini is ideal for any Apple fan’s home.

The Apple HomePod mini is a small smart speaker that produces surprisingly large sound. It is only for those already deeply involved in the Apple universe, as it requires an iPhone to use and integrate seamlessly with the iPhone. You can control your smart home and connect multiple HomePod minis for multi-room audio. 

Apple HomePod Mini – Best Affordable Speaker

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The Apple HomePod mini, which replaced the original HomePod, is the smaller sibling of the HomePod (2nd generation). Using Siri, this smart speaker responds to voice commands.  In addition to reading the news and setting reminders, Siri can also respond to your queries. It can also carry out commands to operate the thermostat in your smart home.

Not only that, but this sophisticated ball of technology doubles as a loudspeaker. You can use your iPhone to stream audio files, including music, from services like Apple Music. You can synchronise the sound throughout your home by connecting multiple Apple HomePod devices for stereo playback or multi-room audio.  Compared to its larger sibling, it is simpler, more affordable, and has greater functionality because of Apple’s improvements to Siri over the last few years.

Apple made this to go well with the larger HomePod. If you already have an original in your living room, you can place the mini in different areas of your house without spending as much money or taking up as much shelf space.

Apple HomePod Mini Specs

  • Room filling sound
  • Intelligent assistant
  • Smart Home Control
  • Available in 5 different colors
  •  Superior quality speaker
  • Reasonable size
Pros
  • Compact design
  • Affordable in comparison to the large HomePod
  • It has surprisingly good sound for its size
  • Siri is quick.
  • Able to differentiate between various voices
  • Intercom feature
  • Able to use AirPlay on any Apple product
  • The microphone consistently detects the wake phrase
  • Seamless setup
Cons
  • Relatively reliant on Apple products and services
  • Not as good as competitors charging the same price
  • The volume knobs on top are tricky.
  • Siri’s features and capabilities still lag behind those of Google Assistant and Alexa.
  • It lacks a mute button and needs an iPhone or iPad to function
  • It can be annoying to have to hand off requirements.

Apple HomePod Mini Features

  • Design

Compared to the larger HomePod, the HomePod mini has a different appearance. Although the HomePod mini lacks the original HomePod’s room-tuning feature, it still has four microphones to pick up voice commands. Even from across the room, when a video is playing, the microphones pick up my voice commands quite well, and the processor responds quickly. When I ask Siri to play music, answer a question, or operate a smart home device, she usually responds and completes the task more rapidly than either Alexa or Google Assistant.

You can choose between a grey or white mesh covering for the speaker, and the power lead connects to a USB-C charging block. The HomePod mini, which comes in Space Gray, blue, orange, yellow, and white, is held firmly in place by a rubberised pad on the underside. A cloth covers the speaker’s touch-sensitive top panel to the edge. 

  • Sound

What is the sound quality of the HomePod mini? Although the smaller HomePod is a step down from the larger model, it sounds surprisingly detailed and full-bodied for its size. Apple put the highest priority on sound quality when designing the original HomePod. The HomePod mini is not quite the same, but you can still tell that some thought was put into making the mini sound passably.

The sound quality is the main justification for purchasing the HomePod mini. We do not often say this about Apple products, but in this case, you are getting excellent value for the money, given the price. The sound is directed down to the HomePod’s base and fired outward to create a more immersive sound. The new S5 chipset inside the HomePod mini enables ‘computational audio,’ according to Apple.

Impressive performance is achieved by using a full-range driver and two passive radiators and the ability to adjust the audio output in real-time to improve the sound quality. Although the HomePod mini’s good quality will not wow audiophiles, it is still a compelling speaker, considering its size and cost. For the “average” music listener, Apple is betting that high-quality audio will sell and that there will not be many issues—especially when two devices are paired.

  • Siri: the best virtual assistant

The HomePod mini, powered by Siri, can respond to a wide range of queries and commands.  For example, you can ask Siri to send a text message, locate an AirTagged item, add a to-do to your Reminders list, provide a weather report, provide directions to an address, and more. You can use Siri Shortcuts from the HomePod if you have already programmed them on your iPhone. Siri can also interact with Apple’s apps, such as notes, calendars, reminders, and Maps, as well as some limited actions with third-party apps that have added SiriKit support.

It is enjoyable enough to interact with Siri, and in recent months, its voice cadence has been improved to sound more natural. My requests were answered by Siri rather quickly, and even when I spoke quietly, its four far-field microphones could hear me across the room. Smart devices can also control Apple’s HomeKit-compatible smart home platform through Siri on the HomePod mini.

  • Pricing

The Apple HomePod mini retails for $99 at stores like Best Buy, B&H Photo, Staples, Target, Walmart, and (of course) Apple. Though there are sometimes temporary $10 price reductions for the HomePod mini on holidays and other occasions, price reductions for this device are rare. If you want to buy a HomePod mini and see it for $10 off, take advantage of it since that is usually the best deal you will find. 

How do you set up the Apple HomePod mini?

The Apple HomePod mini emits a loud startup noise and glows white around the touchpad when you first plug it into the wall.  The HomePod mini is simple to set up, even though it requires an iPad or iPhone running the most recent version of iOS or iPadOS.

When you unlock your iPhone while it is in close proximity to the speaker, a card containing setup instructions appears on the screen. Upon pressing the button, Siri invites you to experiment with the various smart commands within the Home app.

Should you buy the Apple HomePod mini?

The HomePod mini has seen many improvements during the previous three years. With its new temperature and humidity sensors, sound recognition, and Thread border router capabilities for Matter, the HomePod mini feels like a more comprehensive smart home hub than when it was first released.

For those who own an iPhone, iPad, or Mac, the HomePod mini is a great option and an investment that pays off due to its robust music performance, seamless integration with the Apple ecosystem, and overall durability and robustness.

Final Thoughts

The Apple HomePod mini is a superb smart speaker for those just starting.  Setting up and operating an iPhone should be easy for anyone familiar with using one. The speaker’s seamless integration with the iPhone makes modifying your setup for daily tasks simple if you decide to upgrade from a basic to a smart home and purchase a few HomePod minis.  You can use Siri to answer your questions, send messages over the intercom, and stream music with your roommates.

FAQs

How can the Apple HomePod mini be turned on and off?

The HomePod mini can be used without being “turned on.” Instead, it turns on immediately upon plugging in and waits for the wake phrase, “Hey, Siri.” Similarly, you can mute the microphone on the HomePod mini to stop it from actively listening for the wake phrase, but this is the only way to “turn off” the device.

Is the HomePod mini worth it?

Indeed, it is. The Apple HomePod Mini is a great place to start if you are just beginning with smart homes. It has many helpful features, sounds fantastic for its small size, and is simple.

Can I use HomePod to watch TV?

The HomePod can be a stand-alone speaker and a digital television’s audio output. On the other hand, a TV and the HomePod cannot be connected directly. To play audio from a television, the HomePod, a wireless Bluetooth device, must establish an AirPlay connection with an Apple TV device.

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