This totally makes us wince!
Photo: iFixit

Plenty of
folks haven’t laid hands on Apple’s HomePod yet, and already
the good folks from iFixit have not only bought one, but
taken it to pieces to take a peek at what’s under its
minimalist exterior.

Their teardown reveals a veritable tank of an
Apple product that’s incredibly durable but virtually
impossible to get inside. Unless you fancy using a heat gun and
saw to open up your brand new smart speaker, that is!

easily repairable

On the
repairability scale of 1 to 10 (with 1 being virtually
impossible to repair and 10 being straightforward), the
HomePod scores a paltry single point. Perhaps most painful of
all is the fact that the iFixit team was only able to gain
access to it after using a (cringe!) knife to cut through the
beautiful fabric mesh exterior.

the team notes that inside the mesh cover they found evidence
of a drawstring to remove the outer material, but weren’t
able to find out how to use this. “Even though it looks like
there ought to be a nondestructive way inside, we failed to
decode it,” they admit. “Without a repair manual, your odds
of success are slim.”

Here’s what HomePod looks like in kit form.
Photo: iFixit

teardown also, unsurprisingly, focuses on Apple’s cunning sound
design for the HomePod. This includes a 4-inch high-excursion,
upward-firing woofer, beamforming seven tweeter array,
beamforming six microphone array, and low frequency microphone
for real-time woofer calibration. One interesting tidbit reads
as follows about the device’s woofer:

“If the magnet on this woofer looks big for a speaker this
size, that’s because it is. Deep, dramatic bass notes
depend on a speaker’s ability to move lots of air. While
that’s traditionally done by increasing the cone’s
diameter, Apple instead increased the travel of the voice
coil, which in turn requires a bigger magnet. That way the
speaker diameter stays small, but it can still move enough
air to deliver quality bass notes.”

You can
read more details
about the HomePod’s teardown here.

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