Apple HomePod to hit stores in February

Can Apple take on the might of the Amazon Echo and Google Home

Can Apple take on the might of the Amazon Echo and Google Home

During Tim Cooks visit to Toronto, Apple coincidentally dropped news that its delayed home assistant speaker, the HomePod, is going to be available for pre-order on Friday in the US, UK, and Australia with units arriving on February 9.

On Tuesday, the tech giant said its new smart speaker will hit stores on Friday, February 9. The HomePod also provides full access to the Apple Music catalog, which can be accessed through voice commands and synced to your other Apple devices. Both market leaders were selling smart speakers that were heavy on the smarts - with Alexa and Google Assistant on board - but light on the actual speaker end of things. Users will be able to control smart home devices through the HomePod and ask Siri for weather forecasts, sports scores, and other information.

The HomePod will retail at a price of $349 in the U.S. and it will come in white and space grey colour options. In case you are not aware, the stereo sound feature gets triggered when one HomePod in a room detects another one in the same room.

Choose "Apple HomePod" or "Google Home". Apple users can now ask Siri to read the news for them, but the drawback is that this is only limited to the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.

With the new option to disable Siri, users will have some sort of guarantee that even the HomePod will not be privy to the goings-on in their households.

HomePod is created to work with an Apple Music subscription for access to hundreds of genres, moods and activities.

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When it was first unveiled last winter, the HomePod's main marketing advantage was its allegedly superior audio quality.

So if you were planning on buying more than one, it won't offer multi-room support until some unspecified later date ... What may add to the woes of the company is that its new speaker won't be coming with two of the most important features.

Developers can also use SiriKit for HomePod to enable new actions related to messaging, lists, and notes. Despite this, the device missed its December launch date.

With support for HomeKit, HomePod can control hundreds of home accessories or set scenes like, "Hey Siri, I'm home", to control a number of different accessories at the same time.

It's powered by an A8 chip, which is the same processor that Apple used for the iPhone 6.

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