Apple's HomePod speakers may have impressed the audiophiles across the world but the owners of wood furniture are left distressed because leaving the speaker on top of wooden surfaces cause a unusual white ring to form. In a review by Wirecutter (via 9to5Mac), they discovered that the HomePod can leave stains on wooden furniture. At issue appears to be a silicone base that leaves marks when interacting with certain oils used to finish wood furniture. To be fair, HomePod isn't the only smart speaker to leave marks on wooden surfaces, Sonos is also having this issue. I had the Sonos Ones sitting on top of a pair of speakers with a clear coat, and no white marks were apparent.
According to TechInsights, Apple's HomePod costs $216 to make and has an extremely thinner profit margin when compared to the likes of Apple Watch and iPhone.
Apple have responded by adding to their support page a section on "Cleaning and taking care of HomePod" where they confirm and explain reasons for this. Instead, it is asking users to keep the HomePod on a different surface.
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The defect was spotted by Wirecutter, which noticed that a white ring appeared after the HomePod was placed on an "oiled butcher-block countertop" and a wooden side table. While these marks should be easily removed by a damp cloth, some HomePod owners may want to invest in a surface protector like the one now being offered by Pad & Quill. No, the HomePods aren't exploding but they sure are raising some concerns.
Apple seems to have taken note, now including on its website details on where to place the smart speaker. In case the stain doesn't go away, the company recommends "cleaning the surface with the manufacturer's suggested oiling method".