WireCutter's review, published Wednesday, praised the HomePod's audio quality, but the reviewers were in for a surprise when they lifted the speaker up. They found that the speaker left a distinct white ring on the countertop and side table where it had been sitting.
Pocket-lint found the same ring after placing the HomePod on an oil-treated kitchen counter. The ring faded some days later, but never completely disappeared.
Mashable's photographer also noticed a similar ring on her stainless steel counter after she shot our review unit.
Several "victims" shared the speaker's unexpected legacy on Twitter:
For the HomePod, this really doesn't look good.
The HomePod's design is no small part of its appeal. Unlike some smart speakers, which look a bit like glorified Pringles cans, the HomePod is large, sleek, and gorgeous. But owners will certainly be less likely to place a speaker on a prized piece of furniture if doing so could leave a permanent mark.
Apple has updated its HomePod support guidelines to address the complaints:
It is not unusual for any speaker with a vibration-dampening silicone base to leave mild marks when placed on some wooden surfaces. The marks can be caused by oils diffusing between the silicone base and the table surface, and will often go away after several days when the speaker is removed from the wooden surface. If not, wiping the surface gently with a soft damp or dry cloth may remove the marks. If marks persist, clean the surface with the furniture manufacturer's recommended cleaning process. If you’re concerned about this, we recommend placing your HomePod on a different surface.
With that, it really depends what HomePod buyers are up for. Do you want put the speaker wherever you damn please, or are you willing to move it (or your furniture) to ensure nothing gets marked up? That's a question each HomePod owner will have to answer themselves... at least until someone debuts HomePod coasters.