My interpretation of what Apple has said is that HomePod will pass SiriKit commands to an associated iOS Device. SiriKit commands are those that incorporate third party apps. They have to be handed off to a device because the apps simply aren’t on the HomePod. Messages also have to be handed off because the iMessage account wont be setup on the HomePod. I cant see things like weather, show times, sport, or general questions being handed off as they don’t require any specific information about the person.
As time progresses, we’ll see software updates that improve the functionality of HomePod, much like we saw with Apple Watch. I would love a HomePod, but am going to wait for the 2nd or 3rd Generation.
I do have an Amazon Echo and have been very impressed by it. She has been acting up a little bit lately, claiming to not know my lights when they’re called the same as they always have been - but I think that’s just a glitch.
I recently bought the Sonos One. Don’t make the same mistake. It is terrible in it’s current state. The speaker itself is incredible for its size - but the Alexa integration is just awful. It’s over sensitive too. I was watching Modern Family on my iPad yesterday in bed, and whenever anyone said ‘Alex’, my Sonos woke up
I have no experience of Google Home
TLDR; HomePod will get better over time, wait for Gen 2 or 3. Echo is fab, Sonos One is crap rn.