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Apple may announce a Siri-powered speaker next week, but it won't ship until later this year

On Monday, Apple will kick off its annual developer conference, WWDC 2017. While the firm will announce its usual updates to its operating systems, it might also announce a new standalone Siri-powered speaker, similar to Google's Home, Amazon's Echo, and Harman Kardon's Cortana-powered Invoke.

The report comes from Bloomberg, and the device has allegedly already entered production. Unfortunately for those that want to get their hands on such a speaker, it won't ship until later on this year.

The speaker will offer "virtual surround sound technology", which would be a differentiator from its competitors. Naturally, its other differentiators would be Apple services, such as Apple Music, and integration with the company's devices.

The firm will also likely offer developers the opportunity to implement third-party "skills" with the device, as its competitors already do. This is why WWDC seems like a natural time for Apple to announce such a device, as it's a developer conference, even if the speaker isn't slated to actually be released until the end of the year.

Nevertheless, Apple should have quite a bit lined up for its day one keynote on Monday. Aside from major updates to iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS, the company is also rumored to be announcing new hardware, including new iPad Pros and new MacBooks.

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