Apple’s new US$350 HomePod might make an impression in a number of methods. Along with offering listeners with extremely praised sound high quality, the sensible speaker actually might make an impression on among the wooden surfaces it touches — within the type of white rings.
The HomePod, which is appropriate solely with different Apple merchandise, can stream music to those that have an Apple Music subscription. It has just a few different capabilities too — together with the doubtful means to mar sure forms of wooden surfaces.
Surfaces which might be handled with oil, like a butcher block countertop, for instance, apparently react badly with the silicon base of the HomePod, and call can go away a long-lasting ring. Some customers reportedly used the product for lower than 20 minutes earlier than the speaker left its mark!
Bruh…Apple HomePod leaves “white rings” on Wooden surfaces. That is a 👿🍎! (reported by @wirecutter/@Pocketlint ) https://t.co/ed7PaAXUxs pic.twitter.com/RkWziHcX90
— Brian Tong (@briantong) February 14, 2018
This downside is not confined to Apple’s HomePod. It may very well be a problem with any rubber or silicone-footed floor that’s left on an oiled countertop. Nonetheless, Apple apparently didn’t warn clients and solely acknowledged a attainable danger after a number of experiences surfaced on Wednesday.
On the official product help web page for the HomePod, the compay notes that any speaker that makes use of vibration-damping silicone might go away marks. Involved customers are suggested to observe the furnishings maker’s advisable cleansing suggestions and maybe take into account putting their HomePod on a distinct floor.
Apple’s response, which incorporates the statement that any rings might “usually” merely go away as soon as a tool is moved, or that delicate cleansing could be sufficient to take away the rings, struck a bitter chord with some observers, who chastised the tech large for failing to deal with the difficulty sooner.
“That is so typical of Apple — the ‘you are holding it fallacious’ protection,” mentioned Roger Kay, principal analyst at Endpoint Applied sciences Associates.
“That is very paying homage to antennagate, the place Apple’s response was that the shopper ought to maintain the cellphone completely different,” famous Roger Entner, principal analyst at Recon Analytics.
Most trendy electronics, from TVs to PC audio system, have rubber or silicone bases that assist present stability and scale back vibrations, so the HomePod speaker is way from the one product with these traits. These artificial supplies can break down over time, and oils will hasten the deterioration.
There are loads of objects that would stain or harm many forms of surfaces, Kay instructed TechNewsWorld.
“There isn’t any cause on the face of it that Apple’s gadget would trigger any extra hurt than some other piece of electronics,” he mentioned.
Apple’s use of a particular kind of silicone reasonably than rubber seems to be the reason for the HomePod’s issues ensuing within the white rings.
Additional, Apple has billed the gadget as a product meant for use across the residence — not on a devoted stand the place TVs usually are positioned.
“Issues sometimes stain tables once they’re moist, however I see no cause for a HomePod to get moist in regular utilization,” Kay added.
“Apple ought to have used a distinct materials the place this would not have occurred,” Recon Analytics’ Entner instructed TechNewsWorld. “Lesser firms than Apple have figured it out how you can construct a tool that does not go away residue on a floor.”
This situation might have ripples that transcend the white rings. The HomePod already has been criticized for working solely within the Apple ecosystem. The staining situation places better concentrate on the negatives, and Apple’s lackluster response does little to restore the harm.
“A lot of these manufacturing points and particularly edge-case take a look at eventualities can occur, however what’s essential is how rapidly organizations determine these, and the way they reply to them,” mentioned Scott Kendrick, vice chairman of selling at CallMiner.
“Catching a problem because it turns into frequent however earlier than it makes it to widespread [visibility] could be the distinction between failure and success of a product,” he instructed TechNewsWorld.
Figuring out the difficulty is half the battle. The true work is available in crafting an efficient response and guaranteeing buyer care brokers can execute on it, added Kendrick.
It seems Apple might have failed in that regard, having supplied customers little in the best way of sensible suggestions.
The precise repair may very well be reasonably easy, recommended Kay. “You simply use frequent sense as as to whether one thing wants a coaster or different protecting materials beneath it.”