For a product that Apple started taking orders for on Friday, we still don’t know much about the HomePod. And, in the run-up to its February 9th release, people are still figuring out exactly what it’s capable of.
Apple’s website suggests that the Siri-powered voice control functionality only works with Apple Music, for example — it states “Siri works with Apple Music. Subscription required for Apple Music.” But what about if you use iCloud Music Library through iTunes Match, the digital music storage and playback system that Apple Music largely superseded?
An exhaustive breakdown from iMore suggested that, for some reason, iTunes Match-only users wouldn’t be able to invoke playback requests with Siri for their music stored in iCloud. However, iMore’s Serenity Caldwell later followed up to clarify that iTunes Match will be covered as well, and Daring Fireball’s John Gruber has also heard that the HomePod works this way.
The HomePod acts as a regular AirPlay speaker as well, of course, so you can beam content to it from any AirPlay-enabled app on your phone. You might even prefer this to Siri. (I probably will.)
But Apple has been unusually quiet about the HomePod so far, and people who order the speaker today aren’t quite sure what they’re going to be getting. We’re looking forward to receiving the device and finding out for ourselves, then — stay tuned.