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Apple Gets into WiFi Speakers with HomePod

Apple Gets into WiFi Speakers with HomePod

HomePod is a seven-inch-tall speaker that has Apple's digital assistant built in. We'll get it sometime later in 2018.

In fact, we couldn't even touch the pristine white table it sat on, and trying to activate it with "Hey, Siri" didn't work either.

Analysts say Apple has been slow to improve its Siri virtual assistant and launch a smart speaker, after Amazon launched its Echo in 2014. Apple says that the speaker can adapt to the environment in which it is placed, playing music in all directions when placed in the center of a room while directing sound to the away from walls if placed in a corner. The company hopes that making a speaker that does a great job of playing music and podcasts will be sufficient to earn it a loyal customer base. For price, Sonos wins as the cheapest option however, the Apple HomePod offers much more than just a way to play audio. If you've been Googling flights to Reykjavik, it might suggest an article about Iceland. But Loup Ventures estimates that 10 million Echo and Home devices have been sold worldwide. In that way, it's like a very big AirPod.

The speaker also has a 4-inch upward-facing woofer with a dynamic equalizer to ensure the sound is free from distortion. Besides, it has a custom array of seven beam-forming tweeters, each with its amplifier providing high-frequency acoustics, along with a well-balanced, smooth timbre, as well as precise directional control of a multitude of beam shapes and sizes.

We were able to extend our index finger and thumb and nearly span the entire speaker, which, according to the HomePod specs, is just under seven inches tall.

People interact with the digital assistants on those speakers more frequently than on their phones, according to Technalysis Research of Foster City. Siri will be voice activated to respond to requests for information and other help around the house. HomePod is compatible with iPhone 5s and later, running iOS 11. And when factoring that HomePod comes equipped with the A8 chip, the same processor found in the iPhone 6 from 2016. Two HomePods may be set up in the same room and they will automatically work together.

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. United Kingdom pricing has yet to be announced, and it will come in white and space grey shades.

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All the communication channeled through the HomePod is encrypted.

At the very least, Apple does excel at lovely design.

Apple will be saving some insights into HomePod for later this year when it is expected to unveil a tenth-anniversary edition of the iPhone.

Among the new technologies include a smart speaker called "HomePod".

That compares to Amazon Echo, which costs US$180, and Google Home, which retails for US$129.

We'll update our first look we check out the HomePod more.

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