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Apple's Intercom Feature Works on iPhone, iPad, HomePod, Apple Watch, AirPods, and CarPlay

wbrat

macrumors regular
Sep 18, 2014
202
149
Is homepod / homepod mini required for this to work? Even if I really wanted to have one, it is not available in my country...
 
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madeirabhoy

macrumors 65816
Oct 26, 2012
1,126
257
Confused but not surprised that it’s not on Mac as Siri on Mac is useless which is weird given that there’s more computing power.

Siri on my Mac won’t even do timers.
 
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unplugme71

macrumors 68030
May 20, 2011
2,827
753
Earth
This is definitely a first world problem but I wish they would allow a different word besides Siri. The word Siri just sounds so unpleasant to the ears in my language that I am sure this is one of the reasons Siri has never really picked up here. Siiiiiiiiri just ugh lol it sounds so unfriendly and robotic. Alexa sounds better cuz it makes you feel like you are talking to a person (positive) and not a robot (negative association)

I don’t care what the name is. I just want it to work.
 
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manu chao

macrumors 604
Jul 30, 2003
6,880
2,781
This is definitely a first world problem but I wish they would allow a different word besides Siri. The word Siri just sounds so unpleasant to the ears in my language that I am sure this is one of the reasons Siri has never really picked up here. Siiiiiiiiri just ugh lol it sounds so unfriendly and robotic. Alexa sounds better cuz it makes you feel like you are talking to a person (positive) and not a robot (negative association)
If you have your phone at hand, you can initiate a Siri request via the side button without having to utter the word Siri.
 
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RoboCop001

macrumors 65816
Oct 4, 2005
1,433
260
Toronto, Canada
It IS real time conversation.

It is? Are you sure? It seemed like it would send a recording of your voice to the other speakers. And it seemed a bit awkward when replying, having to say "Reply" first. I'm sure they tested a bunch of different ways of doing it. But I wonder if there is a way of doing it where it's actually real-time. Or maybe have 2 options to choose: the recorded single-message version, and then a version where it becomes a 2 way channel until you turn it off.
 
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CarlJ

macrumors 603
Feb 23, 2004
5,103
8,577
San Diego, CA, USA
They show this working with HomePod as the sender or recipient of intercom messages, and all the iOS/iPadOS (and AirPod) devices working with it too (including an out-of-the-home device on CarPlay). So what if you don’t have a HomePod - will you still be able to use Intercom amongst your other devices? Or do they arbitrarily block it if there’s no HomePod on your network?
 
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kmichalec

macrumors 6502a
Aug 14, 2010
828
224
So, we are reviving NexTel phones, but with a pretty new interface on much more expensive devices?
 
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irishv

macrumors regular
Oct 27, 2008
130
57
I really hope this works with Airplay 2 speakers and Airport Express. I have in ceiling speakers throughout the house connected to AEs and this would be a great addition.
 
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Ramchi

macrumors 65816
Dec 13, 2007
1,054
530
India
You definitely must live in a palace to use this feature 😂 and Apple knows that their customers are living in one....
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
2,872
2,592
Seems like you could kind of do this already with Siri and audio iMessage, for the personal device part of it. The homepod to homepod function is more unique (and it’s good it extends out to personal devices), but it would be missing out on a lot of usefulness if you can’t choose to enter into a real time conversation, like a real intercom. If both people have to preface every message with “hey Siri respond”, then wait for her to understand, then send, then recipient has to manually play it, then the conversation will get very cumbersome very quickly and will be no different than a voice iMessage conversation. It would then only be useful for one or two messages. Whereas a real intercom is more like a walkie talkie and useful for actual conversations. But maybe there’s some technical limitation that prevents this functionality.
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
2,872
2,592
It IS real time conversation.
On real intercom you have to push a button to reply. This is no different.
Does the recipient have to accept and play the message? If so then it is different. Real time means the recipient hears the message at the same time that you speak it, which is what real intercoms do. I’m hoping that’s what this does, otherwise it’s just an audio iMessage conversation via Siri which already exists.
 
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Mr. Awesome

macrumors 6502a
Feb 24, 2016
624
1,235
Idaho, USA
With all that alleged machine-learning power of Ax SoCs, I wonder if Siri ever will be able to process language on-device, instead of requiring internet connection even for simple things like setting a timer, creating a reminder or playing a playlist.

I know in iOS 14 Dictation is processed on-device, and I think that might be the case for Siri, too. So the actual speech recognition is already on-device.
 
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insomniac86

macrumors 6502
Oct 13, 2015
393
547
Perth, Western Australia
Does the recipient have to accept and play the message? If so then it is different. Real time means the recipient hears the message at the same time that you speak it, which is what real intercoms do. I’m hoping that’s what this does, otherwise it’s just an audio iMessage conversation via Siri which already exists.

if people pay attention to the demo, you’ll see it broadcasts the audio automatically, you don’t have to accept it. But it’s not real time. It’s sending audio the same as sending a voice clip via iMessage but the difference being is it auto plays that message. It’s not real-time Audio.
 
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Alan Wynn

macrumors 65816
Sep 13, 2017
1,016
1,006
Me and my wife use Walkie-Talkie daily and it works well, no issues. It used to be faster to connect (or it was not disconnecting that quickly as it is ), but no major issues.

My BF and I do as well. His office is in the house next door and it really comes in handy. The examples were all "tell everyone", but that makes me think there is a "tell someone" mode that will work with the U1 chip to only message the room/location/device needed to talk to that person.

I also think that is a precursor to two-way conversations (one-to-one is easier to implement).
 
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subjonas

macrumors 68030
Feb 10, 2014
2,872
2,592
if people pay attention to the demo, you’ll see it broadcasts the audio automatically, you don’t have to accept it. But it’s not real time. It’s sending audio the same as sending a voice clip via iMessage but the difference being is it auto plays that message. It’s not real-time Audio.
Ah ok, then that should be somewhat useful, though not as useful as real time intercoms (also walkie talkies). Having the delay of having to finish your message before it sends and plays on the other end impedes on the flow of conversation. Also I assume all that voice data has to be sent to Apple then back to one’s home. It would be great if it could never leave the home.
Of course even more cool and ideal would an option to go into a phone-like conversation where you can not only hear speaking real time but you can talk over each other, like the person is in the room with you, until you say “hey Siri end call” or something. And none of this data would be sent to Apple or a phone carrier ideally.

My BF and I do as well. His office is in the house next door and it really comes in handy. The examples were all "tell everyone", but that makes me think there is a "tell someone" mode that will work with the U1 chip to only message the room/location/device needed to talk to that person.

I also think that is a precursor to two-way conversations (one-to-one is easier to implement).
Yeah I’m still unclear how some of this works. Can’t wait until we can test this out. Though I probably won’t be able to test out any feature that depends on the U1 chip as I have regular homepods and don’t plan on getting minis. Maybe one, we’ll see.
 
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twinlight

macrumors 6502a
Sep 4, 2016
614
456
I wonder how well this works.. tried it at home and got this.
D25BC6A1-E024-4D72-A4CF-E9DB4A71E307.jpeg

I don’t have any HomePod but hoped it would work with my iPads, Apple TV and iPhone.
 
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