Apple announced today a new smart home speaker called the HomePod. The ridiculously-named device is very similar to an Amazon Echo. You can play music, listen to the news, and control your Apple Home Kit.
The 7 inch-tall speaker is powered by an A8 chip, the same one in the iPhone 6. It has a 4-inch woofer and seven beam-tweeters — the long way of saying it projects sound very well. It uses spatial awareness to adjust its sound to the room its in, and two HomePods will automatically synch.
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The HomePod comes with Siri, who responds to questions and commands, and saves your preferences if you tell her you like a particular song. To activate her, you can say, “Hey Siri,” and six microphones will pick up your voice.
The HomePod will be available for $349. It will launch in December in the US, UK, and Australia, with the rest of the world to follow later.