Apple is building an intelligent home assistant device to compete with Amazon’s Echo.
On Thursday we learned that it will likely come embedded in the next Apple TV, rather than as a standalone speaker.
And now, on Friday, CNET reports that it will likely have a camera that watches whatever room it’s plopped down in.
With major tech companies betting on a computing future that involves a lot more talking to boxes and orbs strewn about your home — Google is launching an Echo competitor as well — it actually makes a lot of sense that these devices would gain the power of sight.
That’s because, as is already the case with your laptop and smartphone, it’s increasingly important that your home device know exactly who is talking to it before it does anything. The Amazon Echo can already learn to bank for you. In the future, it looks likely that more and more personal data will pass through these devices.
A camera would give Apple’s Definitely-Not-An-Echo an added layer of security. It could see your face, recognise you, and require that visual confirmation for sensitive data.
Of course, there are obviously massive privacy concerns here. But if the sighted Apple smart device does work out, expect to see cameras on a lot more of these devices.