Apple employees can buy HomePod at half price for limited time

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Apple employees are getting a late Christmas gift from the tech giant in the form of a 50 percent discount on the new HomePod speaker, which hits store shelves at $349 next week.

According to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, Apple workers can take advantage of the hefty price cut for a period of two months.

Apple previously extended deep product discounts to employees when Apple Watch first launched in 2015. At the time, the Calif., company offered an identical 50 percent savings on Apple Watch and Apple Watch Sport models, and $500 off the solid gold Edition series.

Beyond the two month timeframe reported by Gurman, details of the HomePod discount are not yet known. However, Apple will likely follow a plan similar to the Apple Watch incentive, which offered discounts at preorder.

HomePod went up for sale last Friday ahead of a scheduled launch date of Feb. 9. The at-home speaker features high-end audio components including multi-tweeter and microphone arrays, as well as advanced algorithms designed to deliver room-filling sound.

Like other smart speakers currently for sale by Amazon and Google, HomePod supports a virtual assistant in Apple's Siri alongside compatibility with connected home accessories via HomeKit.

Most recently, Apple this week confirmed audio support for its diminutive speaker, noting compatibility with first-party services like Apple Music, Beats 1, iTunes purchases and Match tracks, and podcasts.


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