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Apple kills off original HomePod, will focus on $99 HomePod Mini

The company says it will keep providing existing HomePods with software updates and support through Apple Care.

apple-homepod-mini-1

The HomePod Mini next to the original HomePod.

Chris Monroe/CNET

Apple has axed its original HomePod and will turn its attention to the smaller version of its smart home assistant, the HomePod Mini, the company said Friday. 

"We are discontinuing the original HomePod, it will continue to be available while supplies last through the Apple Online Store, Apple Retail Stores and Apple Authorized Resellers," Apple said in a statement. "We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini."

Read more: Apple HomePod Mini features you should know about: Every tip and trick we've found

Apple will continue providing existing HomePods with software updates and support through Apple Care, the company said.

The HomePod Mini was launched in November last year, costing $99 in comparison with the $300 HomePod original. When it was released in 2018, CNET reviewer Megan Wollerton praised its "stellar" sound but said it didn't offer as many features as competing speakers powered by Amazon's Alexa and Google's Assistant. "If you and everyone else you live with has an Apple device and you're sold on having an Apple smart home, the HomePod is worth a close look," she wrote at the time. 

The HomePod Mini earned similarly strong praise from CNET reviewer Molly Price for its sound when it was released in 2020, with a note that the lower price made it much more attractive. "The HomePod Mini is as on-par as Apple wants to make it with Google and Amazon's offerings, and I'd recommend it to anyone invested in the Apple universe," she wrote.

The news about the original HomePod's demise was reported earlier Friday by TechCrunch.