According to a new report, Apple is still working on a new product. The new product includes three revolutionary items: the first one is an Apple TV with touch controls, the second is a revolutionary HomePod, and the third is a breakthrough new FaceTime camera. Three things, a display, a speaker, and a camera. Are you getting it?
A quick throwback to Steve Jobs announcing the first generation iPhone back in 2007. When hearing about the new HomePod, AppleTV, and camera combination, that was the first thing that came to my mind. It feels like history may be repeating itself, and we might see multiple products turned into one, although we don’t have any names to call it by as of right now.
According to Mark Gurman’s weekly Power On newsletter, Apple is still working on a unique new product that would combine the HomePod, Apple TV functions, and a FaceTime camera to let you record yourself and have video calls. Gurman says that he “absolutely” thinks that a new HomePod is coming soon, which is rumored to be “at the center of Apple’s approach” to the home.
We’ve already seen the iMac with a white front bezel, and like it or hate it, it may fit better into a home environment. Gurman reported back in April 2021 that the upcoming device could have Apple TV box features, allowing users to watch videos, movies, listen to music, and use Siri as a digital assistant.
The project was reportedly at the early stages last year, and we can only just hope that the product is finally ready for prime time. The original HomePod was discontinued back in March 2021, as it couldn’t compete with cheaper smart speaker alternatives from Google and Amazon. If Apple were to launch in this new market, it would go head to head with the likes of Google, Amazon, and even Facebook’s Portal products.
What will it be called?
The name is unknown at the moment, but given it’s meant to be a stationary product that is unlikely to be moved around, our best bet would be “HomePad”. It’s not an iPad, which can be carried around everywhere, and a HomePod is, well, a speaker for your home. The device is expected to have a display with a camera, and it would make sense to call it that.
Apple is known as a privacy-focused company, and we expect to see privacy features built-in into the product. There are many conspiracy theories claiming that our phones, smartwatches, and smart home speakers listen in to our conversations, and it wouldn’t be surprising if the microphone could automatically shut off via a physical switch when not being used – which is also used in some modern laptops and some smart speakers. The camera must also have a physical cover that would shield the sensor when not being used.
All data must be processed on the device itself, and be able to communicate with other recognized and “Home” products on the same network, although it’s likely that some FaceTime information must be provided to Apple to operate the service. We would also love to see a new product to integrate and use iMessage.
Does it have a chance to take off?
The Facebook Portal Plus device comes with a 14-inch display, and it costs $349. The Amazon Echo Show costs $249, while Google’s Nest Hub Max goes for $229. If Apple can price the upcoming device between $229 and $349, it has a chance to take off and become a popular product, but it’s unlikely to be an attractive device above the $400 mark.
If Apple manages to unveil it at an attractive price, we could see the product in a lot of living rooms and kitchens in the future, especially if the camera can follow the person, like the camera on the new iMac computers. The HomePod speaker quality was already known as an excellent quality device, and if the upcoming product can bundle all of the Apple Services and Apple products into a single item, it might just have a chance to be a massive hit.
Would you purchase a home product that is dedicated to your living room, or kitchen, and only used for video calls, looking up recipes, and talking to friends and family? Let us know in the comments below!
The Apple HomePod mini comes with Siri, and it provides a crisp and 360-degree audio surround sound system.