HomePod opens up the possibility for a Smart Device App Store

Post By Hannah Downing

On June 5th, Apple announced a new product that many people probably wondered if and/or when Apple would unveil it: the HomePod. This product is an in-home speaker, created primarily to sync up with a user’s phone and apps, allowing them to play from “…over 40 million songs” and it “…provides deep knowledge of personal music preferences and tastes and helps users discover new music.”

This access to such a large selection of music comes from the assumption that many of the users would use Apple Music with the HomePod, even though an Apple Music subscription costs money, which some people may opt out of, especially if they prefer free music-streaming services, such as Spotify. When it comes to potential competitors, there are multiple to consider. Will people who prefer their free Spotify account, but are loyal Apple users, want to use the HomePod if Spotify is not supported? There are plenty of other Bluetooth speakers out there that let you play anything you’d like, but this is unclear about the HomePod, as Apple’s press release mentions using Apple Music, but does not specify whether other mobile applications for music will also be supported. It is also worth mentioning that prices are very similar between Spotify and Apple Music, but Apple Music does NOT offer a free version. At the very most, Apple Music offers a free three-month trial, while Spotify’s version is free for as long as the user would like, widening the gap between Spotify-preferring Apple users who may not go for the HomePod if it doesn’t support their music-streaming preferences.

The other aspect of the HomePod worth noting is that it will be an all-around smart in-home device, just like Amazon’s Echo. Apple even uses the phrase “Hey Siri…” to get Siri’s attention, just like the Echo does with Alexa. This is worth noting because, with multiple products like the Echo and the HomePod allowing for in-home integration with users’ devices, it begs the question, what will happen to the mobile app? How will its usage start to change if devices like the Echo and HomePod continue being popular with consumers? Similarly, how will companies, like Oplytic, who take part in mobile app marketing, change to integrate these new systems and the preferences of the people using the mobile apps? Systems like the HomePod may create a space for apps to be used in even more ways than they already are, which means advertising could happen in more ways, as well. This is an exciting and varying time for apps and mobile marketing. Keep in touch to see not only how Oplytic innovates, but also how we continue to help our advertisers and publishing partners.

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