Published: Sun, June 11, 2017
IT | By Jonathon Greene

Apple aims to 'reinvent home music' with HomePod smart speaker

Apple aims to 'reinvent home music' with HomePod smart speaker

Apple was nearly sheepish in mentioning that, yes, Siri on the HomePod can do most of the usual Siri things like make appointments, find sports scores, and send messages. If the speculation pans out, the speaker would be Apple's first new product since its smartwatch in 2015.

The speaker works, unsurprisingly, with Apple Music and has several speakers and a built in woofer.

Apple Inc on Monday introduced the HomePod speaker to compete with Inc's Alexa assistant and Echo devices for users who prefer voice-operated systems for shopping, planning and other tasks. You can talk to the speaker to play anything in your Apple Music library and more.

While real-time acoustic modeling, also known as automatic room-sensing technology, will enable the speaker to learn its position in the room and optimize the music listening experience based on the same. Priced at $349, the HomePod is poised to ship later this year just in time for the holidays.

But Apple is late to the game on VR. To take on its rival Echo, Apple had always been rumored to be working on a device.

"One of the features touted by the HomePod is that it's going to have a lot better audio qualities than any of the other speakers out there", Tom's Guide reviews editor Mike Prospero said.

Apple last night sought to put itself at the centre of a new wave of smart home gadgets and rebut claims it had lost ground against tech rivals by unveiling a voice-controlled music speaker.

Alphabet Inc. followed with Google Home, a speaker introduced a year ago. Research firm eMarketer says than 35 million people in the USA are expected to use a voice-activated speaker at least once a month this year, more than double its estimate from last year. It has "spatial awareness" to detect where it's located a room and adjust the sound accordingly. Apple Music, which hosts £9.99 a month, now offers 40 million tracks from two million artists. And as Bloomberg's Max Chafkin noted earlier, its not imperative for Apple to be the industry's first mover; The iPhone was developed on the heels of the Blackberry craze, and has gone on to be the preeminent smartphone available.

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