HomePod, Apple's 1st major new product since Apple Watch, announced

- More than 5,000 developers from around the world are in San Jose for Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference that kicked off Monday. It’s back in San Jose for the first time in 15 years.

In a marathon two and half hour keynote speech, Apple unveiling a chock full of new hardware for consumers.

“This is going to be the best and biggest WWDC ever,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Among the new technologies include a smart speaker called “HomePod.” It’s a voice-controlled speaker compatible with Apple Music and Siri, challenging competitors Amazon Echo and Google Home.

It’s the first major new Apple product since the Apple Watch was unveiled in 2015 and has a retail price of $349.

“I got to hear a demo of that compared it to some of the other competitors,” said Analyst Tim Bajarin of Creative Strategies. “This new HomePod speaker is the best I've seen for the home in that package.”
               
The HomePod is creating the most buzz among a series of announcements that included a new iPad IOS, a larger IPad Pro and a new lineup of MacBook Pros and iMacs with higher speed processors.

“It was amazing for me because it’s my first time in San Jose, first time seeing Tim Cook,” said Developer Mario Duran of Mexico.

“I like Home Kit. I think HomePod is good thing,” said Laurent Valle of Paris. “It's the biggest news for the day.”

Developers were also wowed with the new ArKit. It’s a software developer kit that allows developers to create augmented reality apps.

“It’s electrifying,” said Rashmi Sivaramareddy of Australia. “Every time they are announcing new stuff lots of new features on the iPad, new messaging, drag and drop stuff.”

The conference ends on Friday. Apple CEO Tim Cook was spotted at SP2 Restaurant in downtown Monday night for a private event.

It’s expected to be another big day Tuesday with former First Lady Michelle Obama at the conference. She’s expected to speak about improving workforce diversity.
 

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