Sonos Beam vs HomePod: Which should you buy?

Overall, the Sonos Beam is more versatile, and while it's expensive, more people will get use out of it. Apple's HomePod is more for music listeners because of the high fidelity audio quality, but it's a good home theater speaker system only if you're totally invested in the Apple ecosystem with Apple TV.

The breakdown

If you're looking for a speaker that will work with your existing TV without any extra equipment, then the Sonos Beam is one of the best options you can buy.

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Header Cell - Column 0 Sonos BeamApple HomePod
Works with existing TVYesNo
Requires additional equipmentNoYes
Clearer dialogueYesNo
Amazon AlexaYesNo
Siri through AirPlay 2YesYes
Full Siri integrationNoYes
Support for third-party streaming servicesYesYes
Compatible with Apple TVYes (through HDMI and HDMI-ARC)Yes (through AirPlay 2)
Surround soundYes (multiple speakers required)Yes (multiple HomePods required)

While both are great, we definitely recommend a Sonos Beam over HomePod. That's because there is so much more versatility and flexibility with the Beam as compared to the HomePod.

With Sonos Beam, you can create a complete home theater sound system since it plugs directly into your TV's HDMI-ARC port, and that's all with one device. Additionally, multiple Sonos speakers can be grouped together to create a multi-room experience or you can go for surround sound. The sound quality may not be as rich as HomePod, but it's still powerful. It also works with multiple video streaming devices, comes with Alexa and Siri integration, and Speech Enhancement means you'll never be asking, "what did they just say?" again. It makes dialogue crisper, so even if the sound isn't as strong as the HomePod, it has features that make the listening experience worth it.

However, if you care more about listening to Apple Music and using Siri commands for a hands-free approach to simplifying life and HomeKit control, then the HomePod is the way to go. If you have an Apple TV, it's especially worth it, since the HomePod will only stream music through AirPlay. Plus, the high fidelity audio makes it worth the super high price tag if that's an important factor for you.

Christine Romero-Chan was formerly a Senior Editor for iMore. She has been writing about technology, specifically Apple, for over a decade at a variety of websites. She is currently part of the Digital Trends team, and has been using Apple’s smartphone since the original iPhone back in 2007. While her main speciality is the iPhone, she also covers Apple Watch, iPad, and Mac when needed.

When she isn’t writing about Apple, Christine can often be found at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, as she is a passholder and obsessed with all things Disney, especially Star Wars. Christine also enjoys coffee, food, photography, mechanical keyboards, and spending as much time with her new daughter as possible.