Apple has released a software update 12.4 for HomePod. The new update brings support for Japan and Taiwan as HomePod will soon be available for sale in these countries. This firmware release coincides with the release of iOS 12.4, which was released earlier for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, with improvements to Apple News+, security updates and other bug fixes.
Update HomePod to iOS 12.4
To update to the latest firmware, open Home app on your iOS device. This iOS device should be signed in with the same Apple ID that was used to setup HomePod. Tap the compass icon on the top left of the Home app, go to Software Update and tap install. If you have multiple HomePods, all of them will be updated through this process.
Enable Install Updates Automatically so that future updates are automatically installed.
Since Apple first launched HomePod, it has received various features through software updates like AirPlay 2 and Stereo Pairing. In subsequent updates, it also received features like song lyrics search, ability to set timers, Find my iPhone and phone calls. At WWDC 2019, Apple announced that it will be adding voice recognition so that HomePod can recognize who is speaking to it and show their Apple Music recommendations, calendar and timers. Users will also be able to Handoff music from iPhone to HomePod. These features will be available in iOS 13, which is currently undergoing beta testing with developers and will be released this fall to all users.
HomePod is currently available for purchase in U.S., UK, Australia, Canada, France, and Germany, while Japan and Taiwan will be added to this list soon. Apple has been slow with their roll-out. The $50 price cut also shows that it might not have been selling as well as Apple hoped.