The iPhone calling features of Apple's HomePod are currently clunky at best, completely goddamn unusable at worst. But all that is set to change with the arrival of iOS 12 and its HomePod OS 12 counterpart.
According to reports, making and receiving calls on your Apple smart speaker will be part of the update - currently you can use the HomePod as a speakerphone, but you need your iPhone's screen to initiate the call / answer the call - and transfer the audio over, just as you would with a regular Bluetooth speaker.
The OS 12 software will, purportedly, give you access to your contacts, call history and voicemail, and it's also stated that the HomePod can be set to ring when you have incoming calls.
Also on board the new OS is a find my iPhone feature, where you can ask Siri on your HomePod to make your phone ring if you can't place it - as well as functionality for multiple timers and increased musicology skills (such as liking / disliking artists and genres).
Add to this that, at WWDC in June, Apple revealed that the HomePod will be able to participate in group audio FaceTime calls, and it's clear that the Siri-powered smart speaker is quickly evolving from the work-in-progress speaker that came out of the box when it first went live back in February.
We're expecting to see these new functions land around September/October, which is also when iOS 12, macOS Mojave, watchOS 5 and tvOS 12 are all set to arrive too.