HomePod will now automatically choose a default media app

It’s been a few years since Apple let HomePod users choose their preferred media app to stream music, podcasts, and audiobooks when asking Siri. However, with HomePod Software 17.4, Apple is making some changes and removing the option to manually choose a default media app for the HomePod.

As noted by Apple blogger Mahmoud Itani, HomePod Software 17.4 RC – which was released to beta testers on Monday – removes the Default Service menu in the Home app settings. Users will no longer be able to choose a specific app to work with Siri, but that doesn’t mean Apple is removing third-party app integration with Siri on the HomePod.

Instead, Apple says the update enables Siri to “learn your preferred media service” when you ask the virtual assistant to play a song or podcast. In other words, HomePod will now automatically choose a default media app based on your usage.

This update enables Siri to learn your preferred media service, so you no longer need to include the name of the media app in your request. This update also includes performance and stability improvements.

The behavior is similar to what Apple has implemented for iPhone and iPad users with iOS 14.5. In this case, Siri can ask the user which media app they want to use and remember the decision for a certain period of time. However, there’s no settings menu where users can choose a specific app to be the default player.

While Apple argues that the change is part of Siri’s intelligence, some users may not like not having the option of always using the same app to play songs and other media on the HomePod. Third-party apps compatible with Siri on the HomePod include Deezer, Pandora, and YouTube Music.

It’s worth noting that, since iOS 17, users can ask Siri on the HomePod to play media from a specific app installed on their iPhone. HomePod Software 17.4 should become available to the public as soon as tomorrow.

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