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HomePod mini Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

Article ID = 273
Article Title = HomePod mini Frequently Asked Questions FAQ
Article Author(s) = Graham Needham (BH)
Article Created On = 14th October 2020
Article Last Updated = 14th October 2020
Article URL = https://www.macstrategy.com/article.php?273

Article Brief Description:
Frequently Asked Questions about the HomePod mini
Q. What is the HomePod mini?
A. It's a newer, smaller, cheaper version of Apple's full-size HomePod high quality speaker system with Apple Music/Siri integration.
Q. When is the HomePod mini European launch dates?
A. The HomePod mini was announced on the 13th October 2020 with pre-orders in the UK starting on 6th November and first availability/shipping on the 16th November.
Q. What colours is the HomePod mini available in?
A. Space grey or white.
Q. How does the HomePod mini connect to my network/the internet?
A. Via wireless/Wi-Fi connectivity (802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi‑Fi with MIMO).
Q. What are the requirements for using a HomePod mini?
A. The following are required:
  • 802.11n Wi-Fi Internet access
  • iOS/iPadOS 14 or later running on an:
    • iPhone 6s / SE (1st generation) or later
    • or iPad Pro, iPad (5th generation) or later, iPad Air 2 or later, iPad mini 4 or later
    • or iPod touch (7th generation)
Q. Will the HomePod mini require an Apple Music subscription?
A. An Apple Music subscription is not required but Apple states an Apple Music subscription is required "for full music functionality".
Q. Will the HomePod mini work with iTunes Home Sharing?
A. No.
Q. If an Apple Music subscription is not required and iTunes Home Sharing does not work how do I play music/audio?
A. You can play music/audio from :
  • iTunes Music Purchases
  • iCloud Music Library with an Apple Music or iTunes Match subscription
  • Apple Music Radio or episodes on demand
  • Third-party music services (a subscription may be required for some services)
  • Radio stations e.g. in the UK you can listen to Capital FM, LBC UK, Heart UK and Smooth UK
  • News briefings
  • Apple Podcasts
  • Beats 1 Live Radio
…or you can use "Airplay" to directly play music/audio from other supported hardware. Apple lists the following:
  • iPhone
  • iPad
  • iPod touch
  • Apple TV
  • Mac
…with the following audio formats supported (this is the list that the original HomePod supports so for the moment we're assuming it's the same for the new HomePod mini):
  • HE-AAC (V1)
  • AAC (16 to 320 Kbps)
  • protected AAC (from iTunes Store)
  • MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps)
  • MP3 VBR
  • Apple Lossless
  • AIFF
  • WAV
  • FLAC
Q. Does the HomePod mini work as a BlueTooth speaker?
A. No.
Q. Can the HomePod mini work with iPhone features?
A. Yes - HomePod mini can be used as a speakerphone with iPhone for crisp and clear audio quality.
Q. Does the HomePod mini support messaging/third party apps?
A. Yes - Through SiriKit, HomePod mini supports third-party messaging apps, so users can ask Siri to send a message to a friend or colleague using apps like WhatsApp. Reminders, note-taking and to-do list apps like Things and Evernote will automatically work with HomePod mini, so Siri can set reminders, create a new list, mark items as complete, or create and modify notes.
Q. Does the HomePod mini support AirPlay?
A. Yes - in fact it uses the new AirPlay 2 protocol.
Q. Does the HomePod mini support multiple speakers (around the house)?
A. Yes - they link to any speakers that support AirPlay 2. Multi-room speaker support requires AirPlay 2.
Q. I'm a Hi-Fi buff and prefer listening to music in proper stereo rather than 360° sound, so this isn't for me right?
A. If there's more than one HomePod mini set up in the same room, the speakers can be set up as a stereo pair for an even more immersive sound experience. Stereo speaker support requires AirPlay 2.
Q. Can I create a stereo pair with an original full-size HomePod?
A. No.
Q. Can Siri recognise more than one user's voice?
A. Yes, Siri can recognise the voices of up to six different family members on HomePod mini and even create a personalised experience for each person.
Q. If Siri is listening all the time is Apple uploading what I say to their servers/listening to me?
Q. What about my privacy?
A. The HomePod mini only records when you say "Hey Siri" and even then what is uploaded to Apple is anonymised and utilises end-to-end encryption to secure the data transfer.
Q. How do I know when Siri is recording?
A. There is an LED on the top of the HomePod mini that lights up when Siri is recording.
Q. If the HomePod mini is playing audio/music does "Hey Siri" still work?
A. Yes.
Q. Does the HomePod mini do anything else other than play audio/music?
A. Yes. It has Siri so Siri can be used for all sorts of questions and answers without any audio/music being involved. In addition a HomePod mini can be used as a HomeKit hub to control a wide range of HomeKit smart home accessories. The HomePod mini also includes a new "Intercom" feature so that you can easily communicate with your family members by voice and they can also respond via their HomePod or other Apple devices.
Q. Has Apple added new features over time via software updates?
A. Yes:
On 20th October 2020 Apple added the following new features via iOS 14.1:
  • Support for ‌HomePod mini‌: Setup and automatically transfer your Apple ID, ‌Apple Music‌, ‌Siri‌ and Wi-Fi settings to ‌HomePod mini‌
  • ‌Siri:‌‌
    • ‌Siri‌ suggestions appear in Maps when you ask ‌HomePod‌ for information about a location‌
    • Web search requests to ‌HomePod‌ can be sent from ‌HomePod‌ to your ‌iPhone‌‌
    • ‌Siri‌ can now stop alarms, timers, and media across ‌HomePod‌ speakers‌
    • Voice recognition support for Podcasts for multiple users in the home‌
  • Intercom:‌
    • Ask ‌HomePod‌ to make announcements to other ‌HomePod‌ speakers throughout your home‌
    • Intercom to all ‌HomePod‌ speakers‌
    • Intercom to a ‌HomePod‌ in a specific room or zone‌
  • Other improvements and fixes:‌
    • Add music to your alarms and wake up to your personal song, playlist, or radio station from ‌Apple Music‌‌
    • Fixes an issue where stereo pairs can sometimes play out of sync‌
    • Improves reliability when using ‌Siri‌ to control multiple speakers‌
    • Optimizes ‌Siri‌ performance‌
Q. How do I update my HomePod mini?
A. By default, HomePod mini should install updates automatically (as long as it is connected to the internet). You can also check manually.

Article Keywords: HomePod mini iTunes iCloud Siri AirPlay Apple Music

This article is © MacStrategy » a trading name of Burning Helix. As an Amazon Associate, employee's of MacStrategy's holding company (Burning Helix sro) may earn from qualifying purchases. Apple, the Apple logo, and Mac are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc.


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