Apple released the first beta of tvOS 17.4 this month, and it includes another reference to a long-rumored Apple operating system: homeOS. Whether or not this actually means anything about Apple’s future smart home plans, however, remains to be seen…
The homeOS reference was spotted by Aaron Perris at MacRumors. The reference suggests that Apple is still working on a so-called “homeOS” in some form or fashion. Currently, the HomePod and HomePod mini are powered by a version of tvOS under the hood.
This isn’t the first time homeOS has been referenced by Apple. Back in 2021, references to the platform emerged in a job listing right before WWDC. Apple ultimately updated that job listing to remove the homeOS mention and replace it with references to tvOS and HomePod instead.
There have been a lot of rumors around Apple’s plans to expand its smart home efforts beyond the HomePod and HomePod mini. Bloomberg, for example, has reported that one of Apple’s projects looks like a HomePod with a touch-screen, resembling an iPad on a robotic arm that can move and twist to face the person in the room.
There have also been rumors of a more generic-looking HomePod with a screen, similar to something like the Echo Show. Last year, 9to5Mac found evidence that Apple has been testing tvOS 17 running on an iPad mini as part of its work on a HomePod with a screen.
Do you think Apple should venture into the smart home market with more variants of the HomePod? Let us know down in the comments.
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