HomePod supply will likely be extremely limited at launch, Foxconn to ramp up 2018 production
In addition to answering more questions about an unreleased iPhone than we ever thought possible, Apple’s Amazon Echo-contending HomePod will probably make headlines of its own over the next few months as it closes in on a still-distant December rollout.
Reportedly manufactured by Taiwan-based ODM Inventec to start with, the Siri-powered smart speaker should beef up its production capacity next year, as Foxconn is expected to join the assembly line.
Until then however, only a limited number of these $349 a pop voice-controlled devices may end up in consumer hands (and living rooms), as confirmed by the President of Inventec’s appliances subsidiary.
Analysts believe the first batch of HomePods set to go on sale in time for Christmas could consist of a measly 500,000 units, with initial supply likely to be about as constrained as another Inventec-made gadget, namely last year’s “magical” AirPods.”
Of course, it’s hard to anticipate whether HomePod demand will match or even exceed interest in Apple’s oft-mocked but successful wireless earbuds launched alongside the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus back in the fall of 2016.
Inventec seems to be counting on a steady stream of revenue from the “smart home device” in 2018, even with Foxconn added to the manufacturing equation, so regardless of extravagant pricing and a relative lack of unique selling points, this bad boy may well become an instant hit.