Apple has been developing a Siri-powered home device and is nearly ready to unveil it, a new report suggests.
According to sources cited in Bloomberg, the Siri-based smart speaker would directly compete with the Amazon Echo, as well as Google’s smart home devices, but offer deep integration with other Apple products, including the company’s HomeKit system.
The device could be unveiled as soon as the Worldwide Developers Conference that Apple hosts every summer, and will likely ship before the end of the year, according to the sources.
The move would reinforce Apple’s renewed emphasis on the services business, such as Apple Music, which has gained more attention from the company as it looks to diversify beyond slowing iPhone sales.
Another feature of the Siri speaker is that it could use more advanced acoustics technology to generate virtual surround sound and provide louder, more crisp sound delivery than current market offerings. It is not expected to feature a screen, however.
The device may also leverage Apple’s Neural Engine chip, an artificial intelligence-specific processor the company is currently developing.
Photo by Luca Bravo