Apple HomePod 3 with touchscreen: What is known so far

The latest rumors suggest that Apple is developing a HomePod 3 with a touchscreen display and cameras.
Apple HomePod LCD display

Apple is reportedly working on a new full-size HomePod that features a touchscreen display for the first time. According to rumors, the device will come onto the market in the first half of this year. Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman was the first to suggest a new Apple HomePod with displays and cameras. The HomePod’s operating system is now based on tvOS. Apparently Apple has been laying the foundations for a HomePod 3 with a display in the background for some time. Here’s everything we know about it so far.

Design and features

The first trustworthy report about Apple’s intention to launch a new HomePod 3 with a display came in March 2023 from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. He said the device will come with a 7-inch display from Chinese supplier Tianma.

In October 2023, the Apple leaker known as Kosutami shared information about an upcoming HomePod model with an LCD display. The device is said to have an almost identical design to the second generation HomePod. However, there is a large LCD touchscreen on the top instead of the LED array that has previously been used on all HomePod models. This report was later confirmed by other sources. They also added that the Apple HomePod 3 is in active development under the codename “B720”.

The code in tvOS 17 suggests that Apple Music and Apple Podcasts will be among the first apps to be rewritten to be compatible with the new display. In addition to album covers, the display could also show important notifications. In December, Kosutami released more images of the prototype, shown above right. You can see a curved LCD display that shows content in the upper area.

Chipset

The Apple HomePod 3 could also get a new chipset. The predecessor is based on the S7 chip, which is also used in the Apple Watch Series 7 from 2021. Despite introducing the S8 chip in late 2022 in the Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch Ultra and second generation Apple Watch SE, Apple has chosen to use the S7 chip.

The latest Apple Watch models feature the S9 chip, which is significantly more powerful than all of its predecessors as it is based on the A15 Bionic. Many Siri requests are processed locally, meaning responsiveness could benefit from an improved chip. The S9 could handle health and fitness data, but the exact chip the device will use is still unknown.

UWB and Wi-Fi 6E

The next-generation HomePod’s display could enable deeper integration with other Apple hardware products, Kuo believes. A new HomePod 3 could launch with the second-generation ultra-wideband chip from the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro. Better audio hardware and microphones as well as Wi-Fi 6E support would be other worthwhile upgrades.

Release date

In his original March 2023 report, Kuo said the new HomePod 3 would launch in the first half of 2024. However, there are currently no concrete rumors about new HomePods.

Kuo also said that Apple will start mass shipping the HomePod mini 2 in the second half of 2024. It’s not clear whether the touchscreen HomePod will be a direct replacement for the HomePod 2 or the new high-end HomePod. Apple is also said to be working on a combined Apple TV and HomePod device, as well as a HomePod with a display attached to a robotic arm.

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