In our testing the HomePod performed with unmatched sound quality. There's no surround sound option like what Amazon demoed with the Echo Studio and Dolby Atmos, but the HomePod does analyze acoustics based on its position in a room, and you can pair two HomePods together for bigger stereo sound.
Apple continues to add small, but meaningful updates to the HomePod. You can pass audio off of your phone and onto the HomePod when you walk near it, and the HomePod can recognize who's speaking for multiple users in a household. However, you'll still need Apple Music to stream directly from the HomePod, and a compatible iOS device to stream other music platforms to it.
At $299, HomePod is quite a bit more expensive than the Echo Studio, and that's down from an original MSRP of $349. Still, if you're an Apple Music lover, we think you'll be happy with this premium smart speaker.