It only took one day—one freaking day!!—for someone to capitalise on the bizarre news that Apple’s £330 HomePod, the speaker that isn’t so smart but sounds pretty great, might wreck your wood furniture. That someone is gadget accessories maker Pad and Quill and we are just as blown away/totally unsurprised as you are.
For the low, low price of $19.95 ( £15) (like about four coffees “at one of those expensive coffee places” Tim Cook loves so much) you can buy yourself a “full-grain leather,” “Marine grade”-stitched coaster that will prevent your HomePod from leaving behind unsightly rings like an icy-cool glass of water on a sweltering summer day. “The latest in smart speaker innovation deserves state-of-the-art surface protection,” reads the Leather HomePod Coaster product page. “Our Leather HomePod Coaster is designed in Minneapolis and handmade by skilled artisans. You’ll love it, but don’t put a ring on it.”
Apple updated its HomePod maintenance page yesterday acknowledging the issue and claims “it is not unusual for any speaker with a vibration-damping silicone base to leave mild marks when placed on some wooden surfaces.” To Apple’s point, the Echo Dot and Sonos One speakers can reportedly cause similar marks to appear on certain wood surfaces, although complaints regarding Amazon’s and Sonos’ devices don’t appear to be widespread. It seems a Leather HomePod Coaster is the absurd response that Apple’s absurd controversy deserves.
Incredibly, and perhaps inevitably, Pad and Quill may not be the only company working on such a ridiculous accessory. When asked about HomePod coasters, a spokesperson for Twelve South told Gizmodo that the company is “in the process of making some amazing new HomePod accessories,” adding that, “we can’t release exactly what they will be.”