APPLE HAS REPORTEDLY started manufacturing its so-called Siri Speaker, with a launch tipped to take place at WWDC next week.
The website's sources claim that the speaker will be the first to offer virtual surround sound technology, adding that it will be both louder and crisper than Amazon and Google's rival offerings. Apple has also considered equipping the Siri Speaker with sensors that measure a room's acoustics and automatically adjust audio levels during use, the source noted, but it's unclear if this will make it into the final product.
It won't have a bloody screen though, the report notes, despite Apple's Phil Schiller last month dissing Amazon's screen-less Echo and Google Home for their lack of built-in display.
"There are many moments where a voice assistant is really beneficial, but that doesn't mean you'd never want a screen," he moaned. "So the idea of not having a screen, I don't think suits many situations. For example, if I'm looking for directions and I'm using Maps, Siri can tell me those directions by voice and that's really convenient but it's even better if I can see that map, and I can see what turns are coming up."
Deep integration with Apple's product lineup is on the cards though, unsurprisingly, with Bloomberg reporting that HomeKit support will enable users to control their IoT gadgets such as light bulbs and door locks.
Apple will also likely let third-party services build products for the speaker, the report notes, after last year opening up Siri on iOS to developers.
The Siri Speaker will probably be unveiled during Apple's WWDC keynote on Monday, but Bloomberg says that it "will not be ready to ship until later in the year."
Apple looks set to have a hardware-heavy WWDC this year, as rumours claim that the firm will also launch three new MacBooks at the typically software-focused event. µ
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