Apple's HomePod is marking up furniture, and the internet isn't happy

Apple HomePod 10+ things you should know before you buy

Pic: POCKET-LINTApple's new smart speakers can discolour wooden surfaces, leaving a white mark where they are placed, the firm has acknowledged.

In a review of the device published on Wednesday, product recommendation site Wirecutter said the speaker left white circles behind on a wooden surface.

While it produces fantastic audio, Apple's new HomePod smart speaker has also annoyed early users with obtuse software limitations, a lack of real Bluetooth connectivity, and missing multi-room playback support that won't come until later this year.

Setup is almost instant and effortless: The procedure is unlike that of any non-Apple smart speaker I've used, and it's essentially the same process as for pairing AirPods.

A number of publications, including Wirecutter and Pocket-Lint, noted the issue in their reviews. Despite fading over several days, the reviewer could still see the blemish. Apple has confirmed that the speaker can leave white rings behind.

"To clear it, I had to sand the wood down and then re-oil it", Miles said.

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The Apple HomePod is capable of producing audio that sounds fantastic, but it is far from being ideal.

Now, it looks like another issue has been added to the HomePod's list of drawbacks. "The marks can be caused by oils diffusing between the silicone base and the table surface, and will often go away after several days when the speaker is removed from the wooden surface".

If you're thinking of buying a £319/$349 HomePod as a hub for your smart home or office, here are some of the HomeKit-compatible devices you'll be able to control.

The issue only appears to be affecting wooden furniture, with tests showing no damage when the HomePod is placed on other materials.

While it's true that other things with silicone bases may stain wood furniture (allegedly the Echo Dot suffers from a similar issue), the real question is why Apple chose to use silicone in the first place. Given that HomePods aren't meant to be put on a soft surface (the tweeters fire down, so putting it on cloth messes with the reflectivity of the sound), it's not the sort of problem you can solve by just putting down a cloth underneath it, either.

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