Madeline Buxton from Refinery29 got to spend an hour with Apple’s HomePod, and she found that Apple’s smart speaker has superior audio quality compared to the competition:
“Fortunately, HomePod also delivers where it counts: The sound. When I listened to the speaker next to Google Home Max, the latest Amazon Echo, and Sonos One, the vocals were consistently crisper and clearer on HomePod. The pluck of guitar strings pops, and bass notes have the robust thump-thump you want from them.”
That said, most people will not have any issues with the audio quality from any of the other smart-home devices from Amazon, Google, or Sonos.
I’ve owned Amazon’s very first Echo speaker for over two years now, and I have zero qualms about the sound. It fills the room, can get very loud, and is clear. Apple’s HomePod might be clearer and louder, but for most people, the Echo will be good enough.
In other words, you won’t feel like you’re missing anything just because you went for an Amazon or Google speaker over Apple’s more expensive offering. The sound on those devices is also very good, and Sonos’ latest offering with Alexa built-in leads the pack in sound quality for those looking for more of a high-end speaker.