Jun 5, 2017

Apple unveils a home speaker focused on music

Screenshot by Axios

Apple unveiled a connected home speaker at its annual developer conference in San Jose, which is due out later this year. The speaker, dubbed HomePod, comes after months of questions (and recent rumors) as to whether the tech giant will release a device to rival Amazon's Echo and Google Home.

"We want to reinvent home music," said Apple CEO Tim Cook. Senior VP of marketing Phil Schiller disses competition, saying that others have good speakers, but no assistant, and those with a good assistant aren't great speakers. "None of them have quite nailed it yet," Schiller said.

History lesson: It's not Apple's first attempt at a home speaker. It had the ill-fated Apple Hi-Fi, a $349 iPod speaker that was a pet project of Steve Jobs.

Here are the specs:

  • It's powered by the Apple A8 processor, same used in some iPhones. "It's perhaps the biggest brain ever in a speaker," Schiller said.
  • Apple's Siri is integrated into HomePod.
  • HomePod can do things like read the news, play music, set up alarms and reminders, check the weather.
  • HomePod can connect to Apple's HomeKit and control smart home devices.
  • Will cost $349 and come in white and "space gray"
  • Will begin shipping in December in the U.S. and the U.K.

The story has been updated with the correct price for the iPod Hi-Fi.

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U.S. coronavirus updates: Infections number tops 140,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The novel coronavirus has now infected over 142,000 people in the U.S. — more than any other country in the world, per Johns Hopkins data.

The big picture: COVID-19 had killed over 2,400 people in the U.S. by Sunday night. That's far fewer than in Italy, where over 10,000 people have died — accounting for a third of the global death toll. The number of people who've recovered from the virus in the U.S. exceeded 2,600 Sunday evening.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 7 mins ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 721,584 — Total deaths: 33,958 — Total recoveries: 149,122.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in cases. Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 142,106 — Total deaths: 2,479 — Total recoveries: 2,686.
  3. Federal government latest: President Trump says his administration will extend its "15 Days to Slow the Spread" guidelines until April 30.
  4. Public health updates: Fauci says 100,000 to 200,000 Americans could die from virus.
  5. State updates: Louisiana governor says state is on track to exceed ventilator capacity by end of this week — Cuomo says Trump's mandatory quarantine comments "panicked" some people into fleeing New York
  6. World updates: Italy on Sunday reports 756 new deaths, bringing its total 10,779. Spain reports almost 840 dead, another new daily record that bring its total to over 6,500.
  7. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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World coronavirus updates: Cases surge past 720,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

There are now more than 720,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus around the world, according to data from Johns Hopkins. The virus has now killed more than 33,000 people — with Italy alone reporting over 10,000 deaths.

The big picture: Governments around the world have stepped up public health and economic measures to stop the spread of the virus and soften the financial impact. In the U.S., now the site of the largest outbreak in the world, President Trump said Sunday that his administration will extend its "15 Days to Slow the Spread" guidelines until April 30.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health