Apple has confirmed that Apple Music will be available through lossless HomePod and HomePod Mini speakers.
The new high-res audio options, which will become available to Apple Music customers from next month at no additional cost, will be made available to users of Siri-powered speakers through future software updates.
Apple has quietly revealed plans on an update supporting document He states: “HomePod and HomePod Mini currently use AAC to ensure excellent audio quality. Support for lossless is coming in future software updates. “
Apple suggests that the Bluetooth connection cannot support lossless audio, which is why the AirPods range is still missed. However, because HomePod and HomePod Mini rely on Wi-Fi connections, Apple Music subscribers will be able to stream lossless audio directly to their speakers.
This also applies to Apple TV, Mac, iPhone, and iPad models, but Apple recommends using the DAC to ensure a lossless sound from anything other than the internal speaker. A pair of compatible wired headphones, plus a DAC is going to be the best (if not only) way to reach a high-race lossless tier that provides a truly lossless experience. Without it, you’ll have to settle for better-but-best CD-quality ALAC files.
Apple says that this top resolution of 24-bit / 192 kHz would be “almost indistinguishable from the original studio recording”, but it would require some additional technology.
However, the big news here is support for HomePod Mini and HomePod. Considering Apple enables users to pair these for stereo sound, this should make an excellent combination.
Apple continues to keep the original HomePod alive despite discontinuing it in favor of the HomePod Mini last year. Last week we learned that the new Apple TV will support 4K passthrough audio, meaning you’ll be able to play any audio connected to your television via a HomePod speaker.
The original HomePod also supports Dolby Atmos and Apple has also confirmed that it is bringing surround-sound technology to Apple Music as well.
If you are an Apple Music subscriber, the HomePod mini speaker or the cheaply available HomePod looks more appealing than ever. It is definitely one of the best smart speakers despite being discontinued.