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Apple may announce Siri Smart Speaker during Keynote Address

10 June 2017

The company is casting Siri as a music connoisseur that will learn and cater to the tastes of the HomePod's owners, as well as answer questions about the songs as they are played.

Naturally, it's created to work seamlessly with Apple Music, but we'll have to wait and see whether it's quite as smart when playing with other streaming services. "It will reinvent home audio", boasted Apple CEO Tim Cook.

The HomePod will be available from December in the USA and United Kingdom, priced at $349 (£215) - although the conversion might differ.

Apple also announced the next version of its mobile operating system - iOS 11 - which will include a new setting for people who use their iPhone in the auto.

Apple's entry into the market could change this.

This has been one major area in consumer electronics lacking Apple's footprint.

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While Amazon Echo and Google Home began stealing some market share from Sonos, Sonos prided itself on the excellent audio engineering that went into its speakers.

The resulting experience was hugely impressive - paired HomePods work together to fire balanced audio out into the room, having first detected each other's presence. It also combats the competitive threat from Google's and Amazon's connected speakers: Those don't support Apple services like Apple Music, which brings in US$10 in revenue per user each month. To take on its rival Echo, Apple had always been rumored to be working on a device. And fortunately for Google and Amazon, Apple's Siri is widely seen as lagging the competition in both its quality and capabilities.

Taking direct aim at services like PayPal, Apple debuted peer-to-peer payments for Apple Pay in which users will be able to send money through the Messages app on iPhones. Before, transactions had been limited to products and services from businesses and institutions.

The iOS 11 features were needed if the iPad Pro wanted to live up to its "pro" name, maintained Kevin Krewell, a principal analyst at Tirias Research. Apple, on the other hand, is focused on selling hardware and apps.

Apple's annual developer conference, WWDC 2017, kicks off tonight.

Safari, Apple's web browser, is getting new features aimed at online annoyances.

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Apple's enviable profits are one of the most awesome aspects of the company. It will block videos that start playing automatically, for instance, and can also prevent ads from following and profiling users. The new model starts at $649 and will start shipping next week. It will not block the ads themselves, though.

Along with upgraded versions of iPad and Mac laptops, Apple unveiled an iMac Pro work station that had the computing built in behind the screen and was touted as the most powerful computer the company has ever made.

The device is just under seven inches tall and uses spacial awareness to improve how it sounds based on the acoustics and available space in its surrounding environment.

The "smarts" of the speaker is from an Apple A8 processor.

Even as we talk extensively about Artificial Intelligence becoming smarter and people embracing the technology with open arms, Apple's Siri, surprisingly, doesn't become the center of the discussion.

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Apple may announce Siri Smart Speaker during Keynote Address