Technology

Apple HomePod vs Google Home: Comparing the best smart speakers

Apple has recently released their smart speaker onto the market, and many are wondering whether it can compete with the products already available such as the Google Home and Amazon Echo. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits and drawbacks while comparing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home.

Voice Assistant

When comparing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home, one of the primary factors to consider is the voice assistant. While the function of a smart speaker is primarily to be a speaker, it’s also important that the virtual assistant has the capabilities you’re looking for in a smart device. Both assistants are more than capable when push comes to shove. The main consideration when comparing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home is the ecosystem of your other devices. If you own an Android phone, your Google Home will interface nicely with your devices. The Apple HomePod, on the other hand, only works with iOS devices, making it a hard pass for those who don’t own other Apple products.

apple homepod vs google home
Image source: Apple.com

With that said, there are some disparities in the capabilities between the two virtual assistants if you’re truly having trouble deciding just based on the ecosystem.

As one of the original smart assistants, Siri has come quite a long way from her initial design, and has a variety of capabilities that make her a unique and valuable utility. Where Siri excels in this Apple HomePod vs Google Home comparison is in her music specific knowledge. The ability to ask questions like “who plays bass on this song” makes it the perfect companion for the music connoisseur.

However, Siri does fall behind Google Assistant when it comes to general functionality. Backed by the intelligence of the largest search engine on earth, the Google Assistant comes out on top when comparing the functionalities of Apple HomePod vs Google Home.

Smart Home Functionality

While both the Google Home and Apple HomePod offer a good amount of utility on their own, the main attraction of these smart speakers for a lot of buyers is the ability of the device to interface well with their existing smart devices – integrating seamlessly into a connected home.

There are a number of smart Home hubs and devices that interface well with both devices, such as Phillips Hue and LIFX as well as Samsung Smartthings. However, Google comes out on top when it comes to overall smart home integration capabilities. While AirPlay is an advantage only Apple’s device has, Chromecast is generally more robust and doesn’t play nice with the HomePod. If you’re an Apple user and your smart home is based around Apple compatible devices, the HomePod is probably your best bet. If you’re not, however, Google comes out on top when comparing the Apple HomePod and Google Home – at least in terms of smart home capabilities.

Skills and Abilities

Part of the appeal of a smart speaker is their intelligence and ability to reach beyond general queries. While the Google Home comes out on top when it comes to general capabilities, does it also reign supreme when considering the various skills and abilities that make a smart speaker truly “smart”?

In short, the answer is yes. The Apple HomePod has a lot going for it, but when it comes to the actual intelligence of the virtual assistant in general tasks, Google is definitely the winner.

With that said, one of the main purposes of a smart speaker is to play music, and as mentioned above, the Apple HomePod does have the edge when it comes to musical queries.

If you’re looking for your smart device to perform actions like acting as an intercom, the Google Home may be right up your alley. With that said, the most robust of the three main smart speakers when it comes to skills is another competitor – the Amazon Echo.

Audio Quality

As smart speakers, one of the most important aspects to consider when comparing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home is how good the audio sounds.

While the world has only just received the first batch of the Apple HomePods, the technology has had a chance to play hundreds of hours of tunes and to give us all a better sense of which speaker is the audio winner when discussing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home.

In terms of audio quality, the two devices are generally neck and neck. Some reviews state that the Google Home has the edge while others have praised the HomePod’s superior audio quality.

apple homepod vs google home

When comparing the HomePod to the base Google Home model, it’s easy to see that Apple’s device is the superior device. However, as a high-end speaker, the true competitor to the Apple HomePod is the Google Home Max. Weighing in at nearly 12 pounds, the Google Home Max is very much a stationary media center and provides some of the best audio quality on the market.

If we had to pick a winner when comparing the audio quality of the Apple HomePod vs Google Home Max, the Max would just edge out Apple’s new device. With that said, the HomePod is significantly lighter and manages to provide audio that is nearly the same, winning it major points as well.

Ultimately, while audio quality is quite important, you’ll find that it won’t be the determining factor when comparing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home Max – despite the fact that it’s a key part of the decision making process. Both speakers will perform admirably when it comes to sound.

Verdict

At the end of the day, we feel that the Google Home is the superior device. Comparing the Apple HomePod vs Google Home is an incredibly close race, and the HomePod will be superior to the Home for those who have a lot of Apple devices. Ultimately, the choice will come down to what ecosystem you’re most invested in, making the Apple HomePod vs Google Home battle more of a decision between Apple and Android than anything else.