By Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Apple is late to the smart speaker game, but the company has high hopes for its HomePod.

When an Amazon Echo Dot and Google Home Mini can be had for about $40, it’s tough to swallow the $350 Apple wants for this thing.

What makes it worth the money?

“Its sound quality really did stand out, compared to some of its competitors,” said Megan Wollerton of CNET.

homepod availability interior placement 012218 Is Apples Answer To Alexa Worth $350?

The Apple Homepod. (credit: Apple)

Like Sonos One, or the similarly-priced Google Home Max, which emphasize both selling points of the “smart speaker.”

Wollerton praises HomePod’s easy setup: just plug in, place your iPhone or iPad next to it, and it’s good to go.

homepod availability internal parts 012218 Is Apples Answer To Alexa Worth $350?

A look inside the new Apple Homepod. (credit: Apple)

That is if Siri is your personal assistant of choice. Compared to Alexa, she does have some learning to do.

“When it comes to certain questions, she’s really confused. She often times would say, ‘Ooh. HomePod can’t handle this.’ But Alexa and Google Assistant nailed it every time.”

Bottom line: with quality audio, good looks, and a price tag to match, HomePod is a smart speaker to consider if you’re all-in on Apple.

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