The Apple HomePod could soon be back from the dead. Not as another standalone wireless speaker, but rather as a built-in audio system for the next Apple TV, Bloomberg (opens in new tab) reports.
The site's sources say this new version of Apple's TV box will combine video streaming with a built-in HomePod speaker, a camera for TV-based video calls, and other smart home features.
It's part of the tech giant's latest push into the smart home space, in order to better compete with its arch rival Amazon. Apple is also said to working on a premium smart speaker with a touchscreen.
Such a device would basically be a mashup between an iPad and a HomePod. It too would have a camera for video calls, and could pan to follow the user around the room, similar to the Amazon Echo Show and Facebook Portal.
Both devices are in the early stages of development at the moment, so Apple might choose to launch one, both or neither.
Apple has lagged behind its cut-price rival Amazon in the smart home space. And its HomePod speaker struggled for sales too. Last month, Apple killed the HomePod, leaving just the smaller, cheaper HomePod Mini as its sole smart speaker.
The Apple TV hasn't been updated in over three years. Recently, we've seen a slew of rumours regarding the next model – it's been tipped to get a 120Hz frame rate and smart new Siri remote control. The Apple TV+ streaming service is also looking to ramp up production to Netflix-like levels with a recent hiring.
Apple is said to be holding its next event next week. That could be too early for a new Apple TV, but you never know...
Everything we know so far about the new Apple TV
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And check out our Apple TV+ review