Wednesday, 18 October, 2017

Apple unveils HomePod speaker at WWDC 2017

Alexa Voice Message Apple unveils HomePod speaker at WWDC 2017
Devin Neal | 06 June, 2017, 06:46

"If Apple does not launch a "skills store", that would be a mistake".

The company will also introduce a new safety feature for drivers that hides incoming messages, and automatically sends a reply text to those messaging them noting that the Apple user is behind the wheel.

Apple is expected to announce plans for a speaker on Monday.

The Siri face for the Apple Watch was the first step in that direction, blending users' calendar information with other useful details, like airline tickets they may have booked.

Apple says its looking to "reinvent" the way we listen to music in the home.

The HomePod will be priced at $349, more expensive than Amazon's $180 Echo or $50 Dot and Google's $129 Home.

Australia and New Zealand see ICC Champions Trophy game abandoned
For New Zealand's captain, Kane Williamson , who top-scored on the day with a well-paced 100, the game was not completely wasted. Starc (0/52) went wicketless in his return to global cricket post the injury he suffered in India earlier this year.

The research firm IDC says Apple and Xiaomi each has a worldwide market share of almost 15 percent in the first quarter. A preview of a new high-powered iMac Pro desktop, due to be released later this year, was also teased.

The company rolled out new tools for developers to create augmented reality applications for iPhones and iPads.

The next version of iOS, which powers the iPhone and iPad, as well as desktop software macOS and the Apple Watch's watchOS were also updated at the firm's Worldwide Developer Conference, WWDC. This week, this included "Minecraft: Pocket" and a new version of "Goat Simulator", an oddball game that's exactly what its name sounds like.

Later Monday, it's expected to announce an internet-connected smart speaker to compete with Amazon's Echo and Google's Home. The company "can't afford to yield valuable real-estate in the heart of people's homes to Amazon, Google and others", said Geoff Blaber, research analyst at CCS Insight.

Siri can do those things, too, but Apple's pitch for Siri-powered HomePod is instead focused heavily on music - the company appears to bank on consumers paying for smart speakers that deliver high-quality audio sound as a sort of gateway into the world of smart home assistants. 39% of smart speaker owners use them to set reminders, and 41% use them to set timers anyway, so why not make it more functional (and by more functional I mean actually functional in the first place)? Like the Amazon Echo and Google Home, the HomePod will play music while also helping people to manage their lives and homes.

Imagine what Apple could do if it didn't mind losing money on one product like a home speaker or from potential future products like an Apple vehicle or glasses that mix the virtual world with reality like the Pokemon Go game.

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