Apple is giving developers advance notice to get their apps ready for the HomePod experience.
Along with releasing new firmware for the unreleased HomePod smart speaker, Apple also notified developers that iOS 11.2 adds SiriKit for HomePod as a way to integrate voice-only experiences into the app.
The HomePod won’t ship until later this year, but two posts on social media show that people working on the device are already testing them in their homes.
One Twitter user has shared an image taken in Menlo Park, CA, depicting a Control Center screen, complete with HomePod icon. Another user, this time on Instagram, posted a black and white photo of a HomePod in what looks like his or her kitchen in Shanghai, China.
References to a new Apple TV device have been discovered in the latest beta for tvOS 11, which could indicate that the new set top box is close to a possible launch.
Developers have been combing through the files in tvOS 11 beta 7 after Apple released it this morning it alongside new iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra betas. While the beta doesn’t come with any major new features, one developer discovered it contains some hints about the long-rumored 4K Apple TV.
The launch of Apple’s new HomePod speaker isn’t slated until the very end of 2017, but after digging into the software that powers the new device, one developer has revealed a number of features fans can expect.
Notorious iOS sleuth Steve Troughton Smith has done some serious research into HomePod and discovered that it’s basically like another iOS device only it doesn’t have a big screen. That could open HomePod up to some exciting capabilities in the future.
Apple’s freshly unveiled HomePod speaker may soon get some competition from its Silicon Valley neighbor Facebook. The social network giant is supposedly developing a smart speaker of its own and based on a report out of Asia, it could pack some features that HomePod can’t match.
According to Apple, its upcoming HomePod smart speaker will “reinvent the way we enjoy music” thanks to its seven-tweeter array, 4-inch woofer, and smart “spatial awareness” technology that lets it “read” its environment.
If you want to find out more about how Apple’s smart speaker works, check out this new patent application. It describes an Apple speaker that uses digital signal processing, microphones and algorithms to play perfectly equalized music.
China’s Alibaba Group has launched a cut-price smart speaker to compete with the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple’s forthcoming HomePod, as announced at WWDC.
Called the “Tmall Genie,” after Alibaba’s e-commerce platform Tmall, the China-only device represents the company’s first step into artificial intelligence hardware. It is priced at 499 yuan ($73.42), which makes it significantly cheaper than the aforementioned rivals.