Apple could be taking a leaf out of Google’s book and launching its own Google Nest Hub style device in the coming months, according to a new report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman.
He revealed that Apple has been working on a new HomePod device with screens and cameras, suggesting that a built-in display would be coming to the smart home device.
Apple made the controversial decision of axing the HomePod last week, in favor of the cheaper HomePod mini, but now it seems the company has a bigger strategy for its smart home sector.
A separate report from MacRumors found that FaceTime and iMessage frameworks have been added to the tvOS 14.5 beta, suggesting a new speaker is coming.
Last year, Apple transitioned the HomePod away from iOS towards tvOS, and because the HomePod and HomePod mini can already use FaceTime audio, the latest introductions could mean that Apple is planning to launch a HomePod with a screen in the distant future.
Although Gurman has suggested there’s no “imminent launch” for the new speaker, it could be possible that Apple drops it this year. After discontinuing the HomePod, the company could be keen to capitalize on the growing smart speaker sector, which is dominated by Google and Amazon, and give consumers another choice with a premium new experience.