Apple discontinues original HomePod speaker
Apple is to discontinue its original HomePod speaker and focus on the cheaper HomePod mini, the company said on Monday.
“We are discontinuing the original HomePod,” Apple said in a statement.
The speaker, which cost 2,299 yuan (US$359), wasn’t being sold on its Chinese website on Monday.
Apple will provide HomePod customers with software updates, service and support through AppleCare, the company said.
The HomePod mini costs 749 yuan.
In China, almost all tech giants, including Baidu, Huawei and Xiaomi, offer smart speakers from less than 100 yuan.
Such speakers act as smart control centers in the home, especially with voice recognition and artificial intelligence features.
Industry insiders say consumers seem to favor smaller, more affordable devices with intelligent functions and that is why Apple has discontinued its larger model.
Meanwhile, Apple is offering its Apple Music streaming service in China. It has features such as Siri support, PGC, or professional-generated content and multi-device support covering Apple devices, Android phones, smart TVs, cars and Windows computers.