During Apple’s event on September 12, the company is expected to unveil the next version of the iPhone, iPhone 7s updates to the Apple Watch, and updates to the new connected smart speaker, HomePod.
TechRepublic’s UK Editor Steve Ranger met with TechRepublic’s Dan Patterson to discuss what big things to expect in next week’s event.
With the new iPhone, “a lot of people are expecting a lot of change,” Ranger said. “A completely new look and feel.” There’s the potential of removing the home button, adding wireless charging, and introducing augmented reality.
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“This could be potentially one of the more interesting and exciting Apple events,” he said. There has also been talk of changes to the new Apple Watch. The device is expected to have LTE, allowing it to have access to the internet or even make calls, and become more “untethered from the iPhone.”
“This is really interesting because this is a baby step toward the Apple Watch being a device in its own right,” Ranger said. “We’ve talked about the potential of smartwatches for a long time, and I think actually adding this connectivity is quite a big step there.”
Lastly, Apple is expected to give updates on its digital assistant HomePod, which competes with other devices such as Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home. “Apple’s playing a bit of catch up here,” Ranger said. However, what makes HomePod different from similar devices is its encryption and security that protects the searches that are performed on the device.
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This is an interesting way of broadening the ecosystem as a way for Apple to get into the smart home environment, Ranger added. The smartphone itself might not be enough for Apple to step into the smart home, and the HomePod could be the bridge that does that. “Siri is going to be the important piece of the glue that connects all these devices up,” he said.