Perhaps the most prominent feature that Apple showed off for the HomePod mini is the ability to use multiple HomePods as an intercom system, and while it makes sense for this to be a feature introduced with the lower-cost HomePod mini — most users haven’t been dropping multiple $300 speakers around their home — there’s no reason that the bigger HomePod shouldn’t be able to play along too.
With Intercom you’ll be able to call out to any one of your HomePods, using Siri, in order to have it broadcast a voice message either to an individual room or to every HomePod in your house. To be fair, it’s not really a true “intercom” in the sense that you won’t be communicating in real-time, but it will allow others to easily respond to your messages, so it still offers two-way communication.
What’s more, the feature will also work across all of Apple’s devices in both directions, so you’ll be able to send an intercom message from your CarPlay dashboard on the way home, or from your Apple Watch while you’re out for a run. Incoming intercom messages will appear as transcribed text-based notifications on iPhones, iPads, and the Apple Watch, while those wearing AirPods will hear them read out, similar to how the Announce Messages with Siri feature works.
Using the Home app it will also be possible for each user to choose to receive intercom messages no matter where they are, or only when they’re located at home, and the home organizer can also determine which users will be able to send intercom messages from their devices.