Apple is working on a competing product to Amazon’s Echo smart speaker, and sources familiar with the iPhone maker’s plans are saying that the device come with built in technology that can scan and recognize the user’s face. With this capability, Apple’s smart speaker would be able to see who is in the room, and play that person’s preferred music, and even set the lighting according to mood.
It is quite possible that Apple is looking to launch this upcoming product before the end of this year. The tech giant however has no big reason to hurry, and it is likely that its smart speaker offering will hit store shelves everywhere in 2017 at the soonest. Still, sources have warned that Apple could change its mind and incorporate a smart camera instead on its product. Or, kill the project altogether.
We are now about to enter into the age of the Internet of Things where everyday objects are being transformed smart gadgets. Not only are homes becoming hives for connected devices, but in the next few years, the houses we live in could be smart devices themselves. The sky is the limit for this next step in connectivity.
And companies like Apple and Amazon are helping lead the way. For the latter, its Echo and its built in voice assistant Alexa are already starting to bring the concept of the Internet of Things to life. As for Apple, although it is still relatively new to developing smart objects, it did already break some ground with its Siri digital assistant service. Now, it looks to expand on that to so much more.
When it comes to connected devices for the home, Amazon’s Echo and Google Home are prime examples, but none of them feature cameras. Instead, they are essentially smart speakers enabled by voice, and allows users to control other home appliances via commands. Apple’s device also looks to the same, by way of Siri, of course.
As for the built in smart camera, it might prove to be controversial, especially for users who take their privacy seriously. Other companies have tried incorporating smart cameras before in their connected devices. For instance, Intel had planned to introduce a TV box that comes with a smart camera, but it was met with concerns from users who just were not comfortable with a device watching them all the time.
Could the same happen to Apple? It is far too early to tell, but with somebody as influential as Apple, it just might pull this thing off. That is, if it decides to release it in the first place.
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