Apple has delayed the release of its long-awaited smart speaker, the HomePod, until early 2018.
The speaker, which was announced at WWDC 2017 in June, was previously due to be released in December 2017.
A spokesperson confirmed the delay to TechCrunch, saying “We can’t wait for people to experience HomePod, Apple’s breakthrough wireless speaker for the home, but we need a little more time before it’s ready for our customers. We’ll start shipping in the US, UK and Australia in early 2018.”
All quiet on the smart speaker front
Although the speaker was originally announced back in June, Apple has remained quiet about its Siri-equipped device, having not even announced international pricing.
In the US, the speaker is due to retail for $349, which currently translates to £265 / AU$460. It’s an expensive speaker, costing significantly more than Amazon’s most expensive Echo device, the Echo Plus, however the most expensive smart speaker from the three major players is set to be the Google Home Max at $399.
The announcement is sure to be a disappointment for Apple fans hoping to get their hands on the brand’s debut smart speaker before Christmas, however thanks to the rapid development of Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa, Apple has some significant work to do if it wants Siri to be able to compete.