New smart speaker expected as Apple kicks off conference

Apple is hoping a new smart home speaker will strike a chord with music lovers - the latest test of the iPhone maker's ability to redefine markets originally staked out by its rivals.

Apple says the sound quality will be second to none and that it features six microphones, which only listen to users when they say "Hey Siri".

It also has a "Musicologist" feature for streaming Apple Music through commands barked at Siri, as well as being able to answer queries about the song playing, such as 'who is the guitarist?' and so on. Yes, you can do the same thing with an Amazon Echo or a Google Home, but remember: This is an Apple gadget.

As part of the announcement at the Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple touted upgrades for the Siri personal assistant in the fall update to the IOS mobile operating system.

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After Taylor Ellis led off the inning with a hit by pitch, Sydney Christensen broke up the no-hit bid with a single up the middle. Two batters later, junior Nicole Pendley ripped a double down the right field line, scoring Knighten with Oklahoma's fourth run.

Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook also announced on Monday that content from Amazon Prime Video, long absent from the Apple TV product, would come to Apple devices such as the TV, iPhones and iPad later this year.

HomePod will go on sale in December in Australia, the USA and the United Kingdom and will cost American consumers $349 (A$465). The success of the Amazon Echo, released in the United States in 2014, paved the way for Google to follow with its own sleek Google Home device previous year.

Apple says the A8 processor chip - the one used in the iPhone - means HomePod will be the "smartest home speaker" on offer.

The Echo, released in 2015, and Google Home, released past year, have helped plant the seeds for a promising market.

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The Ducks had a chance to complete the comeback when Roman Josi took a delay-of-game penalty for shooting the puck over the glass. As we expected, the games would be tight; the first two games were decided by one goal with each team winning one.

More than 35 million people in the US are expected to use a voice-activated speaker at least once a month this year, more than doubling from last year, according the research firm eMarketer. It's nowhere near as intelligent as the Google Home, which is powered by the Assistant and taps into Google Search. The increased price is to cover the improved sound technology, according to Apple.

With a new watch face, Apple Watch promises to learn about your routines to figure out what information to display on the watch face.

During this week's conference, Apple also discussed significant software upgrades for the iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, and Apple Watch and debuted new iPad and Mac computer models. Cook is aiming to double services revenue, which also includes products like iCloud and Apple Music, to around $50 billion by 2020.

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Investigators are now focussing on the terrorist network they believe the 22-year-old Manchester-born suicide bomber was part of. Abedi's family remained a focus, too, with a brother in England, his father and another brother in Libya among those detained.

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