Better with a screen?
While Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing discussed Swift, App Store upgrade pricing, and other topics, the most interesting topic regarded voice-controlled speakers. Schiller didn’t want to discuss two popular options on the market – Amazon Echo and the pictured Google Home.
But he did talk in more general terms about the technology:
First of all, there is a lot of talk in the industry about voice-driven assistants and we believe deeply in voice-driven assistants that’s why invest in Siri, but there is interest in a voice-only assistant, where there is no screen, and we think it’s important to that there are times when it’s convenient to simply use your voice when you are not able to use the screen. For example, if you’re driving [and] you want Siri to work for you without having to look at the screen, that’s the best thing. Or maybe you’re across the room, and you want to ask Siri to change the song you were listening to – you don’t have to walk over and back [and you can use Siri instead].
So there’s many moments where a voice assistant is really beneficial, but that doesn’t mean you’d never want a screen. So the idea of not having a screen, I don’t think suits many situations. For example if I’m looking for directions and I’m using Maps, Siri can tell me those directions by voice and that’s really convenient but it’s even better if I can see that map, and I can see what turns are coming up, and I can see where there is congestion, I understand better my route, and what I’m going to do.
Design cues from the Mac Pro
The speaker is rumored to like similiar to a Mac Pro.
In late April, noted leaker Sonny Dickson said the speaker will feature some type of Beats technology and run a variant of iOS.
He also stated that the speaker’s top will look similiar to the concave Mac Pro with built-in controls. It will also be covered with mesh similiar to what’s curretly found on UE’s popular Boom line.
After Amazon found success with its popular Echo line, voice-controlled speakers are set to become more popular, especially if Apple jumps into the game.
More about the rumored speaker