Apple's Announces HomePod to Rival Amazon Echo

Apple CEO Tim Cook will give the keynote speech at this year's Worldwide Developers Conference where analysts believe the company will reveal AI-driven technology

Going head-to-head with Google Home's speech recognition or Amazon Echo's voice command developer ecosystem could have been disastrous.

As we prepare for Apple's week-long Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) and the big news that the tech giant is expected to reveal, there is plenty of news both surrounding this year's event and potential future ones.

On paper, Apple's choice to present the HomePod a Sonos-esque high-end audio speaker that's powered by Siri compared to a Siri-powered home assistant is deliberate and a concession.

Later Monday, it's expected to announce an internet-connected smart speaker to compete with Amazon's Echo and Google's Home. A revamp of Siri, Apple's voice assistant, is the most-expected new feature on the smartphone front. "[And] You can even ask more complex, music-related questions like 'Who's the drummer in this song?' or 'What album came out on this day 20 years ago?'"

HomePod uses the company's A8 chip, which Apple also uses for its mobile devices.

All the new hardware that Apple announced at WWDC 2017
While it's got the same form factor and 27-inch display as the current high-end iMac , the similarities pretty much end there. Nothing to get too excited about, but Apple has been inconsistent with keeping up with the industry, so this is a good step.

HomePod costs $349 to start and will be available later this year.

Cook also used the Apple keynote to show off new iPad and Mac computer models, as well as provide glimpses at coming versions of the software powering the technology titan's devices.

Also, in important news for the upcoming macOS release, High Sierra, there will be an update to Safari that helps block site trackers and autoplaying videos - something that seems to be an epidemic on media sites right now and it drives me, personally, insane.

Aside from the new speaker, Apple also took the opportunity to announce new iPad Pros, an iMac Pro and iMac updates. Apple introduced its new product called HomePod at WWDC 2017. Apple said that makes the Mac a great platform for development virtual-reality "experiences".

It's part of Apple's effort to entice professionals with tablets that can handle many tasks previously reserved for laptops.

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Thick clouds, occasional showers, and a northeast (on-shore) breeze will prevent temperatures from going far at all on Tuesday . Pleasant weather sets in for the latter part of the work week with less humidity and highs in the upper 70s to near 80.

But Apple is late to the game on VR.

New iMacs unveiled Monday at Apple's annual conference for software programmers are getting better displays and graphics capabilities.

It starts shipping later this year in the USA, United Kingdom and Australia. It's the first time in 15 years that Apple has held its conference in San Jose, the heart of Silicon Valley.

Still, the HomePod will be built with standard home assistant functionality. It would be Apple's first new product since its smartwatch in 2015.

Still, the Apple Watch hasn't been a smash hit, fueling worries that the company's ability to transfix customers had waned after the 2011 death of co-founder Steve Jobs. Apple's HomePod will rely on its own HomeKit for support while Google Home has various partners for smart home hardware that include Samsung, Nest and Philips. For Apple, having one would further broaden the role that its software, services and gadgets play in people's lives. It would mark an effort by Apple to catch up with Amazon and Google.

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Obviously when you have it, you don't want to miss opportunities, but hopefully the weather holds up and we can do it again". Rahal covered the 2.36-mile, 13-turn temporary road course in 1 minute, 13.9681 seconds at 114.966 miles per hour .

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