Apple senior vice president Phil Schiller mocked the Amazon Echo and Google Home devices before teasing up Apple’s much-anticipated Siri-powered smart speaker. Refusing to go into specifics, Schiller still made his thoughts on both smart speakers abundantly clear during an interview with India’s Gadgets 360. “My mother used to have a saying that if you don't have something nice to say, say nothing at all," Schiller said, before talking about the general concept of smart speakers.
He went on to discuss the ‘heavy investment’ Apple has put into developing and improving Siri, before hinting that Apple’s smart speaker may come with a screen. "I think voice assistants are incredibly powerful, their intelligence is going to grow, they're going to do more for us, but the role of the screen is going to remain very important to all of this," Schiller said. “We believe deeply in voice-driven assistant that’s why we invest in Siri. The idea of not having a screen, I don’t think suits many situations. There’s many moments where a voice assistant is really beneficial, but that doesn’t mean you’d never want a screen,”
Schiller also teased up the use of photography combined with the smart home device, hence the need for a screen. Equally, he nodded towards on-screen game play as a key feature in Apple devices.
However, Apple is not the only company considering the idea of adding a screen to its smart speaker. Leaked images of the next generation of the Amazon Echo hint that it will soon be available with a touchscreen. Amazon is yet to confirm or deny the rumour, however both Amazon and Apple are expected to unveil their new smart speakers at next month’s WWDC event.