A reference to “homeOS” was recently found in an Apple job listing, suggesting that the company has plans in the future to change the way it classifies and presents the software that runs on devices like the HomePod mini.
Twitter user Javier Lacort discovered the terminology in an Apple Music-related job posting and posted a screenshot on Twitter† “You’ll work with system engineers at Apple and learn the inner workings of iOS, watchOS, tvOS and homeOS,” the post reads. “The Apple Music Frameworks team owns the technology stack that enables the system-integrated Apple Music experience across all of our mobile platforms: iOS, watchOS and homeOS,” it added shortly after.
The job listing was later found to be updated with “HomePod” instead of “homeOS” in the first case and “tvOS” instead of “homeOS” in the second case.
Currently, the software running on the HomePod mini isn’t publicly named, although it appears to be a variant of tvOS, which itself is a variant of iOS. Of course, it’s possible that Apple internally and unofficially refers to the operating system for HomePods as “homeOS,” and the author of this job posting just omits that informal terminology.
But the potential leak is more intriguing, in part because of a recent Bloomberg report claiming that Apple plans to further expand its smart home efforts and that Cupertino is working on one or more products that will incorporate some of the Apple’s features. TV 4K and the HomePod combine. † For example, Bloomberg sources said Apple is working on a home theater soundbar that will use the HomePod’s technology, but that could also act as an Apple TV, giving users access to various streaming video apps, as well as Apple Music, Apple Fitness+ and Apple Arcade content.
Should those plans come true, homeOS could act as a name for a unified operating system of the HomePod, Apple TV, and new smart home products that Apple plans to introduce in the future. However, it could be closer to an iPadOS-like rebrand than an entirely new operating system.
Apple’s annual developer conference, WWDC, begins next Monday. That’s the most likely time and place for an announcement if homeOS becomes a product aimed at users or developers.