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Advanced data protection for iCloud: Apple offers a solution for this HomePod problem

Apple has recently expanded its line of smart speakers with the second generation HomePod. The new HomePod it comes with a similar design to its predecessor, a new processor, smart home capabilities, and much more. With the release of iOS 16.3 and macOS 13.2 (which will be released to the public soon), Apple introduced Advanced Data Protection function for iCloud. This feature uses end-to-end encryption to provide the highest level of data security in the Apple cloud. According to a report by Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, a bug can cause some issues with HomePod smart speakers when Advanced Data Protection for iCloud is enabled. The company has now published a new support document that explains what to do if users are facing this HomePod issue.
Advanced Data Protection for iCloud: Minimum Requirements
To use this iCloud feature, all devices signed in to a particular Apple ID must be updated to the latest version of the software. It also applies to HomePod speakers that must be running at least HomePod 16.2 software.
How is the HomePod issue affecting users?
Gurman claims that a bug in the Home app prevents HomePods running older versions of the software from updating when the latest iCloud end-to-end encryption feature is turned on. This means that users who buy a HomePod with an operating system older than 16.2 will not be able to set it up. Even the settings of the new HomePod will need to be updated with the latest version of the software.
How to solve this problem
Apple’s support document explains what HomePod users can do if they face this issue. HomePod mini users can connect it to a Mac with a USB-C cable and update it via Finder (or iTunes on a PC). Select the HomePod option in the Finder sidebar and click the Restore HomePod option. This will update the speaker with the latest software, after which users will be able to set it up without issue.
Meanwhile, the first generation HomePod (2018) and the newer HomePod (2023) are not equipped with a USB-C port. That is why Apple has included a fix for this issue with iOS 16.3 which is expected to be widely rolled out to all users soon.
The new version of iOS will allow owners of these smart speakers to temporarily disable Advanced Data Protection to update the HomePod software. However, the company suggests that users who temporarily disable Advanced Data Protection turn it back on immediately after their HomePod’s software is updated. Apple has outlined the steps to turn off Advanced Data Protection in iCloud settings on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac:
Go to the Settings or System Settings option
– Touch your name, then touch iCloud.
– Scroll down to Advanced Data Protection and uncheck Advanced Data Protection.
– If you get an error message when you previously tried to set up your HomePod, you may need to reset your HomePod.
– Then set up your HomePod.
– Update your HomePod to the latest software using the Home app.
– Turn on Advanced Data Protection in iCloud settings on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac the same way you turned it off

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