A HomePod private beta could be testing the ability to enable Apple’s wireless speaker to allow users to make phone calls and use it as a speakerphone for a wirelessly-connected iPhone.
According to the French site iGeneration — as noted by AppleInsider — the HomePod may, at one point, allow users to make outbound calls and answer inbound communications, redial numbers, search the call log, perform emergency calls, and to listen to the user’s voicemail. Less certain if the wireless speaker will allow for audio FaceTime calls or for calls to route through a local Wi-Fi network instead of cellular.
Presently, HomePod owners who want to use the built-in speakerphone feature must make or receive a call on their iPhone and then switch the audio output to the HomePod when the call connects. What’s more, per iGeneration, The HomePod beta supports a Find My iPhone Siri command and support for multiple timers are apparently on the cards.
Chances the rumor is true, per the Sellers Research Group (that’s me): 90%. Apple wants to reinvigorate slow HomePod sales and such features would help accomplish that goal.