Apple's new speaker making an unwelcome mark in some homes - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Apple's new speaker making an unwelcome mark in some homes

Apple's new HomePod was released on Feb. 9 (Source: Apple Newsroom) Apple's new HomePod was released on Feb. 9 (Source: Apple Newsroom)

By MICHAEL LIEDTKE
AP Technology Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Apple's new internet-connected speaker is proving to be more appealing to the ears than to the eyes, depending on where the device is placed.

Some people who bought the just-released $349 speaker, dubbed the HomePod, are reporting that it leaves a white ring on the surfaces of wooden furniture.

In an explanation posted Wednesday, Apple said the problem occurs with speakers that, like the HomePod, are equipped with a silicon base to minimize vibration. The company said the marks will often "go away" after a few days if you move the speaker somewhere else.

If they don't, it recommends wiping wood tarnished by the HomePod with a soft or damp cloth, or cleaning the surface "with the furniture manufacturer's recommended cleaning process."

The marks left by the HomePod threaten to stain Apple's reputation for designing iPhones, iPads and Mac computers that are frequently prized as much for how they look as for how they work. Though it's still too early to tell whether the HomePod's blemishes on wood will dampen the device's sales. If so, that could hamper Apple's efforts to catch up to less expensive internet-connected speakers from Amazon and Google that had a head start in the still nascent market.

Both Amazon and Google designed their speakers primarily to serve as digital hubs that manage peoples' homes and lives via voice-activated assistants. Apple, by contrast, is marketing the HomePod as a high-fidelity speaker programmed to learn listeners' tastes and automatically select songs from the company's music-streaming library.

In the process, Apple hopes to build upon its 36 million Apple Music subscribers and to establish a toehold in people's homes that will give it more opportunities to peddle its services. The HomePod also features Apple's assistant Siri, which is still catching up to Amazon's Alexa and Google's eponymous Assistant in responsiveness and versatility.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Apple's new speaker making an unwelcome mark in some homesMore>>

  • Science & technology news

    Science & technology news

    Pokemon Go is the latest game to take the science and technology world by storm. Click for news on cybercrime, space, social media, computers and technological advances that change our lives daily.

    More >>

    Pokemon Go is the latest game to take the science and technology world by storm. Click for news on cybercrime, space, social media, computers and technological advances that change our lives daily.

    More >>
  • NationalMore>>

  • Indictment of Missouri governor could have political ripples

    Indictment of Missouri governor could have political ripples

    Saturday, February 24 2018 9:15 AM EST2018-02-24 14:15:50 GMT
    Saturday, February 24 2018 10:48 AM EST2018-02-24 15:48:59 GMT
    It didn't take long after Greitens was indicted for alleged invasion of privacy for Missouri Democrats to tie him to Attorney General Josh Hawley. (Source: AP Photos)It didn't take long after Greitens was indicted for alleged invasion of privacy for Missouri Democrats to tie him to Attorney General Josh Hawley. (Source: AP Photos)

    The indictment of Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on felony invasion of privacy charges could have political implications beyond his office.

    More >>

    The indictment of Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on felony invasion of privacy charges could have political implications beyond his office.

    More >>
  • US lands agency makeover would diminish Washington's power

    US lands agency makeover would diminish Washington's power

    Friday, February 23 2018 10:45 AM EST2018-02-23 15:45:44 GMT
    Saturday, February 24 2018 10:40 AM EST2018-02-24 15:40:08 GMT
    U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has changed a proposed overhaul of his department with a new organizational map that more closely follows state lines instead of the natural boundaries he initially proposed.More >>
    U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has changed a proposed overhaul of his department with a new organizational map that more closely follows state lines instead of the natural boundaries he initially proposed.More >>
  • Greitens blames politics, but even some in GOP concerned

    Greitens blames politics, but even some in GOP concerned

    Friday, February 23 2018 8:04 AM EST2018-02-23 13:04:51 GMT
    Saturday, February 24 2018 10:40 AM EST2018-02-24 15:40:02 GMT
    (St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP). A booking photo provided by the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department shows Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018.  A St. Louis grand jury has indicted Greit...(St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP). A booking photo provided by the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department shows Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018. A St. Louis grand jury has indicted Greit...
    Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is defiant, even amid calls for impeachment or resignation, after a St. Louis grand jury indicts him for felony invasion of privacy.More >>
    Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is defiant, even amid calls for impeachment or resignation, after a St. Louis grand jury indicts him for felony invasion of privacy.More >>
Powered by Frankly