Apple pushes back release of HomePod speaker to 2018

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The company has long-term plans for the HomePod, after all. Apple promises to focus on providing a more premier speaker experience with the HomePod to help justify the price with.

The Apple HomePod has been delayed to early 2018, giving rivals Amazon and Google a huge advantage in the smart speaker race.

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Bob O'Donnell, founder of Technalysis Research, said, "Apple has forecast between $84 billion and $87 billion in revenue for the holiday - mostly driven by sales of its $999 iPhone X - so it's unlikely that missing a few weeks of sales of its $349 speaker will affect its financial results".

The tech giant announced the speaker in June at its annual developer conference. Previously, we saw some leaked images of the "smart speaker" from Apple. A Google Home Mini costs $49, but the company is also coming out with a higher-end version for $399. Apple's statement on Friday about the HomePod delay seems to be lifted nearly directly from its AirPods delay announcement in October 2016, which said: "We don't believe in shipping a product before it's ready, and we need a little more time before AirPods are ready for our customers". "We'll start shipping in the U.S., United Kingdom and Australia in early 2018", Apple said in a statement Friday. They can play music, spit out trivia, manage shopping lists and put things on your calendar. It will provide 360-degree sound promising a solid range with deep lows, and spatial awareness to sense its location in a room that allows it to adjust accordingly to such.

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But unlike other companies, Apple is hesitant to open up its speaker to third-party developers.

Amazon already beat Apple with their voice-controlled speakers alongside the virtual assistant Alexa. Although developers can make apps for Siri and HomePod, they're now limited to building things like lists, notes, and messaging. You can stream other services to it from a smartphone, but not with Siri.

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The Apple HomePod will lose a significant number of potential sales because of the delay, but being absent for one holiday season might not matter in the long run for Apple.

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