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Apple unveils HomePod to compete with Amazon Echo and Google Home

The HomePod speaker is seen in a showroom during an announcement of new products at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference Monday, June 5, 2017, in San Jose , Calif.
The HomePod speaker is seen in a showroom during an announcement of new products at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference Monday, June 5, 2017, in San Jose , Calif. AP

Sixteen years ago, Apple revolutionized the technology industry when it released the first iPod.

Apple hopes to do the same with the release of the HomePod, Apple’s second new device introduced under Apple chief executive Tim Cook. Cook announced the HomePod during Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference, according to the Telegraph.

The HomePod is Apple’s version of a smart speaker and is a direct competitor to the Amazon Echo and Google Home. The HomePod will cost $349, which is much more expensive than the $180 Echo and the $130 Home.

With the smart speakers, users can do anything from ordering a pizza to turning off the lights in their house. According to reviewers at cnet.com, the HomePod boasts the best sound quality, but the Echo has the most functions among the three speakers.

Apple is tapping into a market that is projected to be the next big thing in the technology industry. Spending on VPA-enabled wireless speakers is expected to eclipse $2 billion by 2020, according to the consulting firm Gartner.

The HomePod will be available in December, according to Apple’s website.

Here’s a list of other technology Apple revealed at the conference, according to the Telegraph:

  • iOS 11 - The update features an improved Siri. The update will be available in the fall.
  • 10.5 inch iPad Pro - Apple has designed features in iOS 11 that will make the iPad function more like a computer.
  • New Macbook laptops and computers - Apple enhanced both its desktop and laptops with better processors and memory.
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