Apple unveils 'HomePod' speaker, first new product in years

That's probably not a surprise considering the way Apple talked about it on-stage - Phil Schiller referred to the machine more as a "breakthrough home speaker" rather than the avatar of a virtual assistant. As a reminder, there's a huge woofer and seven tweeters inside, all meant to make audio sound as vivid as possible no matter where you are in a room.

Apple's Safari browser will soon be able to stop videos from auto-playing. Amazon led the way through its Echo speakers which are powered by Alexa, and Google followed with it Home device powered by Assistant. Cook included the detail that not only would Prime Video be available on Apple TV, but it will also integrate with Apple's TV app - welcome news for myself and all who use the TV app regularly. The current version is just Sierra.

Apple has finally jumped into the home speaker market; however, they do claim that their new offering, delivers better sound quality than their competitors, analysts claim it will also challenge Sonos.

"There is so much momentum building around these speakers that it would be hard for Apple not to come out with one", said industry analyst Patrick Moorhead of Moor Insights & Strategy.

Apple's Kevin Lynch speaks about the Apple Watch during an announcement of new products at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, Calif., Monday, June 5, 2017.

Indeed, at both WWDC and in its press release, Apple is pitching the HomePod as primarily a way to play music, and not as a home assistant.

Apple's entry into the market could change this.

Apple is introducing an iPad Pro in a new size in an attempt to revive interest in its once hot-selling line of tablets.

Craig Federighi, senior vice president of software engineering at Apple, also announced that Apple is working with Valve Corp.to bring the Steam VR SDK to Metal, and the company is also adding support for Unity and Unreal Engine, the two most popular game engines for creating virtual reality content. Before, Apple Pay transactions could be done only with businesses and institutions.

"New indoor maps of areas like malls and airports indicated that Apple might be laying groundwork to display information over images of those places in the future".

And Apple will have a new "do not disturb" mode for driving.

On the software front, RBC Capital analyst Amit Daryanani expects the iOS 11 - the next operating system for Apple's iPhones and iPads - to get an overhaul that will accommodate the anticipated removal of the home button from the 10th anniversary model of the iPhone due out later this year.

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