Apple is reportedly developing an ambitious product that could reignite its position in the smart-home race. The company is said to be working on a TV set-top box with a HomePod speaker and camera set up for at-home video conferencing.
Bloomberg reports that sources have said the new device is in early development. It’s been reported that the device would connect to a user’s TV and provide smart-home functions on top of the aforementioned video conferencing toolset. On top of that, the device would provide the standard features offered by Apple TV such as the ability to watch and stream content as well as play games.
There is also another device said to be early in development as well. Sources told Bloomberg that Apple is developing a high-end speaker with touch screen functionality. The device is being reported to have functionality with an iPad via a robotic arm. The combination of iPad and what can be assumed as a HomePod of sorts will be used to track a user as they walk around a room.
These efforts can assist in bolstering Apple’s position in the smart-home space next to competitors Google and Amazon. For instance, the high-end HomePod and iPad combination appear to work in a similar fashion as Amazon’s Echo Show 10.
Apple’s smart-home efforts have received mixed reactions. It wasn’t all too long ago that Apple discontinued its higher-end HomePod. However, the HomePod Mini has seen more popularity due to its attractive price point. The company’s Apple TV has also been underutilized as the product has not seen a major upgrade in three years. The introduction of a device that combines features of the two could reaffirm Apple’s commitment to its smart-home division.
As Bloomberg notes, the development of the two products could be scrapped at any moment. Apple commonly works on early concepts of new devices. There’s no guarantee that the company will indeed ship either of the two.