Apple yesterday managed to sneak in several updates to its HomePod speaker between iPhone announcements, including the addition of a brand new feature.
Later this fall, the HomePod will be able to help you relax by playing the "soothing sounds of ocean waves, forest birds, storms, and more" or what Apple calls Ambient Sounds. Apple has not provided any other details, but we guess you'll just have to ask Siri to make ambient noises to make your room feel like an ocean cottage. The function was first noticed by 9to5Mac .
Apple is not the first to let you turn your smart speaker into a white noise player ̵
Apple also shared updates on some HomePod features announced to WWDC. If you want to listen to radios on your HomePod without streaming them from your phone, Apple says you will be able to ask Siri to play any of the 100,000 radios from September 30th. Later this fall, Apple says you will be able to seamlessly transfer a call or song from your iPhone to your HomePod. Coming later this fall: The HomePod will be able to recognize up to six different voices to accommodate music requests and answer questions about each person's messages, reminders and calendars.
It is disappointing that we will have to continue to wait for these features, but when iOS 13 launches next week, it will also have features announced on WWDC that were pressed until iOS 13.1 or later. Contrary to tradition, Apple has restructured its software development this fall to go into stages, probably to give the new features a bit more polish, so hopefully everything works as designed when we finally try to we try everything for ourselves.