HomePod Is Apples Unimaginative Answer To Google Home And Amazon Echo

Apple has elevated Siri from the phone to the home with the launch of its new HomePod smart speaker, unveiled at WWDC 2017.

Apple has announced a new smart speaker device and a new iPad Pro, as well as upgrades to its mobile and desktop operating systems.

Mr Frank Gillett, principal analyst at research firm Forrester Research, said: "Home speaker devices have become an important host for virtual assistants like Siri". The speaker also integrates with Google's Chromecast, so you can interact with Netflix, YouTube and other visual services via your voice. Apple is leaning into artificial intelligence (AI) with improved machine learning and on-device learning aimed at making Siri more predictive and proactive. The HomePod, Apple Music and Siri deliver the best music experience in the home that streams ad-free directly to the HomePod. That's because Apple doesn't wants to boast about its AI prowess, but instead wants to get the consumers excited with its audio.

HomePod will be available for $349 (US) in white and space gray starting in December initially in Australia, the United Kingdom and the US.* HomePod is compatible with iPhone 5s and later, running iOS 11. Google sells Home for US$180, promoting the smart speakers with discounts.

The Echo, released in 2015, and Google Home, released a year ago, were the first entrants in a promising market.

The HomePod is Hey Siri enabled with 6 multi-directional microphones that can interpret the way you say "Hey Siri" with its memory. Amazon's senior VP of devices David Limp explained that he believes Alexa and Siri should be able to communicate with one another, while also pointing to the HomePod's price as an advantage for Amazon... During Jobs' last decade, Apple introduced the iPod, iPhone and iPad - all huge commercial successes that both reshaped daily life and swamped previous digital music players, smartphones and tablets. At WWDC, Apple announced the speaker category for HomeKit, so other speaker makers could more tightly integrate with iOS. Amazon Echo, powered by smart assistant Alexa, is 9.3 inches tall and retails for $179.99. So, why choose to undersell its capacity to outdo other voice-activated speakers as a voice-assistant?

"We have to imagine there is going to be more there", Blau said.

Safari, Apple's web browser, is getting new features aimed at online annoyances. It also allows users to browse large product images and videos, and view star ratings and customer reviews on the product's detail page, the report explained. It's part of Apple's effort to entice professionals with tablets that can handle many tasks previously reserved for laptops.

New features coming to iPhones and iPads include messages that sync to Apple servers in the cloud.

The new MacOS High Sierra will also be rolled out later this year, offering a smart photos feature to make it easier to find what you're looking for. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners.

The P2P payments come with the new iOS 11 update, and is seamlessly being integrated with iMessage.

Ortutay reported from NY.

  • Zachary Reyes