Author Topic: WWDC 2017 announcements - HomePod  (Read 672 times)  

Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

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WWDC 2017 announcements - HomePod
« on: June 07, 2017, 06:42:52 pm »
As rumored, Apple unveiled an Echo competitor at their World Wide Developer's Conference (WWDC). I watched it live via streaming on Monday.

It's called the HomePod, and looks similar to a small barrel cactus. The big feature that all their attention was on the high-quality sound the device will produce. I'll concede that the sound may be order of magnitude better than the Echo or Google Home units, as those aren't anything to get excited about sound-wise. Very little time was given to the Siri aspect of the HomePod, almost as if it were an after-thought.

Possibly they were not emphasizing it because up until now, Siri has been trailing the pack when it comes to voice interaction. I would think that if they had made big strides toward improving Siri, they would make it a big deal, instead of virtually ignoring it.

It does have some nice features, such as adjusting sound output to the room configuration, just as my Yamaha AV receiver does (which cost about as much as the HomePod will). It has multiple microphones just as the Echo and Google Home do. It seems to have the CPU of a two-year old iPhone controlling it (this is actually very powerful). If you have two of them in the same room, they will sync together. Presumably for stereo sound.

And only $350. What a deal.

They also announce a number of other hardware products: Updated laptops, updated desktops, major improvements to the iPad Pro hardware/software, and a killer iMac Pro that starts at $5,000 and can be ordered with an 18-core Xenon processor, and 128 Gb of RAM (with a really crappy keyboard).

No mention of the Mac Mini (which I was considering upgrading), or the iPad Mini. Or the Airport Extreme WiFi router. Or the iPod Touch.

Phones get announced in September, as always.

The iWatch software has been improved a lot, but I confess to not having paid attention to that part.

Also announced was that anything earlier than the iPhone 6 will not be able to run iOS 11. I pretty much expected this. I have an iPhone 6, and I plan on upgrading to a 7 Plus in October or so, when the prices drop.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2017, 07:03:50 pm by Mike D. aka jmiked »

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