Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Preconceived Notions

Apple is busily holding its World Wide Developer Conference: an annual gathering of people in the support structure to meet and discuss all things Apple. As they do every year, the conference began with a keynote address. During the address, a number of big, new ideas came up. Many of them interested me, but one of them was bigger than the others, at least to me.

That was the HomePod. This is a device that most people are comparing to the Amazon Echo. And they have good reason to do so. The Echo was designed as a device to be your in home AI with built in music playback capability. As luck would have it, though I'm fully invested in the Apple ecosystem, I also own an Echo which I've had for about six months now.

I love my Echo. Every morning as I prepare for work, I get my Flash Briefing which, for me, consists of NPR News, the Washington Post politics feed, my local weather and "The Daily" from the New York Times. Those are the sounds that accompany my daily preparation to take on the office. This is a wonderful device. And part of that wonder is that the news feature is something I can't really get from Siri.

So when the HomePod was announced, Echo lovers (such as the private Facebook group I'm a member of) rushed to condemn it as inferior since Siri is inferior to Alexa. But they're missing the point. The HomePod is a high end speaker for playing music that also has Siri embedded. Bottom line: I'm getting one in December.

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Preconceived Notions

Apple is busily holding its World Wide Developer Conference: an annual gathering of people in the support structure to meet and discuss all ...