New smart speaker expected as Apple kicks off conference

Mandy Carr
June 7, 2017

Although the format is not exclusive to Apple, it's not yet clear how well the photos will work with non-Apple software and devices, which mostly use JPEG. These giants are battling over still-emerging fields that are expected to turn into technological gold mines, much the way personal computers and smartphones became moneymaking machines in previous decades.

It wouldn't be the first time that Apple hopped on the bandwagon of a technology product popularized by a competitor.

"Though Apple appears to be playing catch up with Amazon and Google, the primary casualty here may be Sonos". The Amazon Echo, with its signature Alexa assistant, is still the undisputed market leader in terms of compatibility with smart home brands. The Siri digital assistant has been updated to understand more spoken requests focused on music, he added. However, contrary to prior reports from analysts, the Bloomberg report said Apple's home hub will not have a screen. Although Apple is late to the game, CCS Insight analyst Geoff Blaber says the new tools come "as the technology hits an inflection point".

It is Apple's first new device since the company launched its smartwatch in April 2015. It will allow users to talk to Siri, Apple's digital assistant, while at home and costs US$349 - nearly double the price of most competing products.

Like offerings from Google and Amazon the new Apple HomePod has an intelligent voice assistant baked in.

More than 35 million people in the USA are expected to use a voice-activated speaker at least once a month this year, more than doubling from last year, according the research firm eMarketer. That's especially important because people are starting to access information, entertainment and search in a more "pervasive" way that's less dependent on smartphones, he said.

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McIlwain said he expects Apple to add new categories at next week's bash, but not almost enough to match Alexa's number of skills. Apple wowed developers with a new platform to make augmented reality apps, as well.

Hey Siri, what did Apple announce today? The company also released a new computer, the iMac Pro.

Safari, Apple's web browser, is getting new features aimed at online annoyances. It will allow users to automatically block auto-play videos by detecting videos that shouldn't be playing when you open a webpage to read an article, for example. It will not actually block ads, though.

Apple also released a software kit so developers could infuse augmented reality into applications for iPhones or iPads. So far, the service has limited payments to purchases of products and services from companies and other organizations.

In the video below we get to see some of the new features in iOS 11, the video features the iOS 11 beta 1, so there will be some changes before the final release of the software.

Now a new report from iDrop has revealed more about the size and dimensions of the new smartphone and it appears the iPhone could be bigger than the current iPhone 7.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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