AirPlay Not Working with HomePod Mini? Try This Stupid Trick
The HomePod Mini functions as an AirPlay receiver, allowing you to wirelessly stream audio, music, podcasts, songs, etc to the smart speaker. But randomly, the HomePod Mini does not show up in the list of available AirPlay devices.
If you’re trying to AirPlay some audio to HomePod or otherwise trying to use the HomePod or HomePod Mini as an audio output source, and it’s not showing up in your AirPlay device lists, follow along to resolve the issue quickly and to get AirPlay working with HomePod Mini again.
This is the least technical solution out there, but it works:
Unplug the HomePod Mini from the wall or outlet, then plug it back into the power source.
Wait another minute or so, and return to the AirPlay menu and you will find the HomePod available in the list of audio output devices.
Unplugging and reconnecting the HomePod Mini is basically a forced reboot of the little smart speaker, and if you’re having difficulties accessing the HomePod or HomePod Mini through AirPlay, a forced reboot like this usually works to resolve the problem. This tends to work even when restarting HomePod Mini through the Home app does not work.
Problems with AirPlay and HomePod Mini are widely reported, so this is not a rare situation for many users. With solutions ranging from logging out of iCloud, resetting the HomePod mini to factory settings, to restoring the device, none of them seemed to work in my situation for long. But, the forced restart by unplugging and plugging back in, does the trick every time.
Based on my own experience with a variety of smart speakers and AirPlay devices, despite being an Apple device with native AirPlay support, the HomePod Mini is not the most reliable AirPlay device. I would say that about 10% of the time AirPlay does not work at all with the device, and it is not seen or recognized by any iPhone, iPad, or Mac, when trying to use the HomePod Mini as an audio output destination. I find myself using this force reboot trick often, but it seems like this is an issue that should be fixable by a software update to the device rather than having to constantly fiddle with plugging and unplugging the speaker in the most rudimentary of hardware troubleshooting. Contrast that to a Sonos One speaker, which works about 99.99% of the time with AirPlay, no matter what device is trying to connect to it. I regularly use both Sonos and HomePods together with AirPlay, which, whenever the HomePod Mini does actually work, sound great to fill out a room with audio and music.
Do you have issues with AirPlay not working with HomePod Mini? Do you find that unplugging the HomePod Mini resolves the issue for you, or did you find another solution that works? Have you found a permanent fix for HomePod Mini not working with AirPlay or not showing up as an AirPlay receiver? Let us know your experiences in the comments.