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Amid skirmishes to make headway in the smart loudspeaker marketplace, Apple has hired a new HomePod software head, according to Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman. The corporation has reportedly brought onboard Afrooz Family, who co-founded the high-end audio startup Syng with onetime Apple designer Christopher Stringer.

Apple’s $349 HomePod arrived in 2018 to very mixed reviews, and was discontinued early this year. The corporation has noticeably failed to compete with smart speaker competitives, specially Amazon’s Alexa-powered Echo manoeuvres and Google’s Assistant speaker family.

Family worked for Apple between 2012 and 2016 and was on the original HomePod team before starting Syng. That company aimed to develop a “revolutionary” speaker to produce immersive audio, but eventually developed a instead niche, $1,800 speaker. The previous HomePod software head, Jason Harrison, left Apple for Airbnb last year.

Apple’s recent orator produce is the $ 99 HomePod mini, which we described in our Engadget review as an “acceptable Echo alternative.” That device has reportedly cured marketings a bit, but hasn’t leant much of a dent in a market dominated by Amazon and Google, according to Bloomberg.

The biggest problem with Apple’s smart talkers may be Siri and HomeKit, which aren’t as widely supported as Alexa and Google Assistant. The original HomePod was also pretty expensive at open. To make inroads, Apple may need to change its approach and continue to improve integration — as it recently did with a HomePod mini inform that built it work with Apple TV. Apple’s primary goal is to merge its HomePod and Apple TV hardware, according to Gurman.

Apple is supporting its Unleashed contest on Monday, where it’s expected to launch new MacBooks and possibly AirPods, but there’s no rumors of a brand-new HomePod product coming any time soon.

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