HomePod Release Date Delayed: Apple Speaker Will Launch Next Year

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Today, Apple has confirmed that it's not going to meet that self-imposed deadline.

The gadget was first unveiled in June this year when Apple said it would go on sale in the USA for $349 (£265).

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The HomePod had been scheduled to ship in December, in time to compete with the Amazon Echo, Google Home and Sonos during the holiday speaker shopping rush. Besides being employed on the Echo devices, Alexa is now found on the HTC U11, Huawei Mate 9 and as a Moto Mod modular accessory for the Moto Z series handsets. Apple hopes to find more success this time around. HomePod features a large, Apple-designed woofer for deep, clean bass, a custom array of seven beam-forming tweeters that provide pure high-frequency acoustics with incredible directional control and powerful technologies built right in to preserve the richness and intent of the original recordings. HomePod, Apple Music and Siri deliver the best music experience in the home that streams ad-free directly to HomePod. And if you put two HomePods in the same room, both will be aware of the other's presence and will combine forces to improve the capability of the two devices.

TechCrunch's Brian Heaterrelates that Apple issued a brief statement, and that a spokesperson told him the company "needs a little more time before it's ready for our customers". (Amazon chief executive Jeffrey Bezos is the owner of The Washington Post.) But Apple promised that the speaker would have all of Siri's smarts and stand out from the pack by offering superior sound quality.

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