Apple Reportedly Tested A Battery-Powered HomePod But Ditched It
Apple recently killed the Beats Pill+ Bluetooth speaker and while Apple doesn’t appear to have a replacement ready to go, it does seem that the company was at some point testing one.
According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, writing in his weekly Power On newsletter, Apple did at one point test a battery-powered HomePod of some sort, although it obviously never launched.
Now, Gurman says it’s more likely that any kind of portable speaker would carry the Beats brand rather than the famous Apple logo.
Years ago, Apple internally discussed and prototyped a battery-powered smart speaker, but I would be surprised if one ever launches under the Apple brand. The speakers on the iPhone and iPad are pretty decent at this point, and I’m sure Apple would rather consumers buy those for mobile playback than a cheaper HomePod. If Apple does get back into the battery-powered speaker game, I’d guess it returns under the Beats brand. That’s the same place Apple has tucked cheaper audio gear in the past.
There are of course tons of Bluetooth speakers that can be bought already and Apple might suggest that it can’t bring anything to market that isn’t already done elsewhere.
Regardless, a new product to replace the Pill+ would be welcome — even if it doesn’t carry Apple’s logo anywhere on the box.