Apple unveils 'HomePod' speaker, first new product in years

More than just an impressive home speaker, HomePod is a smart assistant in its own right, with its Siri centre letting you make audio commands to perform tasks such as checking the weather, getting traffic alerts and set reminders. But I did notice the HomePod was able fill a large room very well and sounded great no matter what angle I was listening from, which Apple says is possible because the HomePod is smart enough to intelligently tune itself and balance the audio to match any room or position you put it in. Well, the HomePod is easily the best of the three in terms of overall performance - but you'd expect that given it's also the most expensive. The new iOs 10.3.2 update is introduced to fix the bugs.

To accommodate for the included woofer and speaker setup the HomePod comes in slightly bigger package than the competitors too, measuring in at 6.8 inches tall by 5.6 inches wide, and weighing 5.5 pounds.

Apple also said it was making its virtual assistant Siri more aware of context, enabling it to recommend and remind users more accurately based on how they use their device.

In addition, Cook said Apple, headquartered in Cupertino, Northern California, now has 16 million registered software developers worldwide for its consumer electronics, including smartphone known as iPhone, and 3 million of them were added previous year. There are a whole bunch of new features in iOS 11.

HomePod will be initially available in the US, UK and Australia this December. The centerpiece unveiling at Monday's WWDC keynote presentation, the Home Pod is a predictably good looking and well designed device, and Apple CEO Tim Cook says, for one thing, the sound quality for music is going to blow everyone away. Beats Electronics was also working on a Wifi-equipped speaker when it was acquired by Apple in 2014, but Apple made a decision to kill the project before it was publicly announced.

First, Apple unveiled a person-to-person Apple Pay option that enables the easy transfer of money in seconds through iMessage.

May, Corbyn clash over Brexit plans with UK vote a week away
In the 2015 general election , 18 to 24 year olds "were nearly half as likely to vote as those aged over 65", Politico says. Corbyn said May's "no deal is better than a bad deal" would be a disaster for British industry and cause a jobs meltdown.

Apple A8 chip lies at the heart of the latest smart home speaker.

Beyond the hardware and price, the real competition will ultimately boil down to how powerful each product's respective virtual assistants are, which also has implications beyond just this product category.

The smart speaker works by talking to an updated Siri that better understands music-related requests, Apple said during its Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California.

An internet-connected speaker called HomePod is coming in December for about $350. In other words, Apple is positioning it to take on Sonos in audio quality, while offering the smarts of the Amazon Echo, combining the two approaches in a single product. Apple referred to the "ambient" parts like background piano music as distinct from the more central parts like the vocals.

New software for the iPad will feature a dock at the bottom of the device, so that users can move in and out of apps more simply.


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