A new warning has surfaced for Apple HomePod Owners. The silicone based can stain wooden furniture. This first surfaced through Pocket-lint.
We really wanted to love the HomePod. But, when we reviewed it, we discovered the silicone base on Apple’s smart speaker left a white, discoloured ring on our solid oak kitchen worktop that was treated with Danish oil.
Apple Quickly Updated the FAQ
Apple was paying attention to this concern. The HomePod product page FAQs already have an update about how to repair damaged furniture and a suggestion to move the device to another surface. Here is the company’s official position.
“It is not unusual for any speaker with a vibration-damping silicone base to leave mild marks when placed on some wooden surfaces. The marks can be caused by oils diffusing between the silicone base and the table surface, and will often go away after several days when the speaker is removed from the wooden surface. If not, wiping the surface gently with a soft damp or dry cloth may remove the marks. If marks persist, clean the surface with the furniture manufacturer’s recommended cleaning process. If you’re concerned about this, we recommend placing your HomePod on a different surface.”
The situation may not be uncommon, but we have not seen this with other smart speakers so it is reasonable that HomePod buyers wouldn’t be anticipating the white ring outcome. And, some HomePod customers are not too pleased. Is this what happens when you rush a product to market a full nine months after demonstrating it?
#homepod left rings on my wood furniture in less than 20 minutes of use. Thanks #apple I am glad a paid $400 to make perfect etched circles on my more expensive furniture. Guess I can not move it now to cover up the mark. Evil geniuses you are. #applesupport pic.twitter.com/eZng16barS
— Guy San Francisco (@Guyinsf415) February 10, 2018
Just More Fuel for the Apple Haters
Many early Apple HomePod reviews included snarks about Siri’s lackluster capabilities in comparison to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. That sentiment soon gave way to the technology digerati and self-proclaimed audiophiles exhorting HomePod’s unmatched sound quality. Publicity more recently has turned the other direction as two recent tests, one from the well-respected Consumer Reports, placed audio quality for Google Home Max and Sonos One as superior to HomePod.
When you are positioning your product as the best audio experience, losing head-to-head comparisons is never fun. Complaints about stains that your product leaves on furniture just enhances the headache. This situation probably only impacted a small number of consumers, but it is one more data point undermining the Apple mystique.