Apple relaunches on home automation to chase Amazon and Google

If there's one sector in which Apple isn't really breaking through, it's the smart home sector and, for this reason, it has called a new executive to think about tomorrow's HomePod

When talking about smart home and home automation products, two names are always mentioned: Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Between the two litigants, however, there is also a third that, confirming that popular sayings are not always right, is not a third that enjoys. On the contrary: the third wheel in the smart speaker market is Apple HomePod and, compared to its competitors Amazon Echo and Google Nest, it's not in a good position at all.

Apple knows this and has been trying to make up for it for some time, but with little success, despite the fact that its voice assistant Siri is widely used on iPhones. There's something wrong, then, with Apple's smart home strategy. Or, perhaps, someone is wrong in the team that deals with it. For this reason, Apple has recalled a former employee, Afrooz Family, and entrusted him with the development of the software of the smart home platform that revolves around the Apple HomePod with Siri voice commands. The news, reported by Bloomberg, shows at least that Apple has not yet decided to throw in the towel and, on the contrary, still hopes to compete with Amazon and Google.

The new head of HomePod

Until last year, overseeing the development of Cupertino's smart home platform was Jason Harrison, then moved to Airbnb Inc. Shortly after, Apple removed the original HomePod from the market, a product that never broke through due to a very high price: $349.

Last fall, during the presentation of the iPhone 12, Apple also launched the new HomePod mini with a much more affordable price: $99. But it wasn't a big hit either.

We have to wonder, though, why Apple hired back Afrooz Family, a sound engineer who had left Apple in 2018 to create one that produced a smart speaker competing with HomePod but priced at an exorbitant $1,800. Which, needless to say, wasn't very successful.

HomePod with Apple TV

According to Bloomberg, Apple's current idea would be to put together two products that sell poorly into one that will hopefully sell more. Apple, in fact, would be working on an Apple TV with a built-in HomePod, or a HomePod for watching TV, if you will.

This new product could also serve as a screen for FaceTime calls and could debut in 2023.