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

During the unveiling of HomePod mini at Tuesday’s Apple event, Apple introduced an upcoming new feature called Intercom that works across all Apple devices with the exception, it would seem, of Mac.


Intercom will enable family members to communicate with each other wherever they are in the home, with the ability to send and receive spoken messages via HomePod speakers. If a family member is in the garden or away from home, they can still use Intercom on their iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and even CarPlay. Apple explains:

A new Intercom feature offers a quick and easy way for family members to connect with each other at home. One person can send an Intercom message from one ‌HomePod‌ to another — whether in a different room, a specific zone, or multiple rooms throughout the home — and their voice will automatically play on the designated ‌HomePod‌ speaker. Intercom works with ‌iPhone‌, ‌iPad‌, Apple Watch, AirPods, and ‌CarPlay‌, so everyone in the household can get Intercom notifications and send Intercom messages from the backyard or on their way home.

In the latest ‌HomePod‌ beta software, the setup process explains that users can say “Hey Siri, Intercom,” followed by their message, and then choose which HomePods and/or personal devices the message should be sent to. Other options include “Hey ‌Siri‌, tell everyone,” and “Hey ‌Siri‌, reply…” to respond to a message.


On personal devices, Intercom messages appear as notifications with the option to listen to the audio message. Users can also choose when Intercom notifications are delivered to their ‌iPhone‌ (Never / When I’m Home / Anywhere), and can select who can use Intercom via the Home app if they have remote access. Apple is also including an accessibility option that transcribes spoken messages on personal devices.

The Intercom feature will arrive

Coding Is Just A Small Part Of Computer Science: SP Robotic Works’ Sneha Priya


bg pranav&sneha_sp robotic worksImage: P Ravi Kumar

Sneha Priya’s mantra to introduce any technology is simple: the right exposure at the right age. “It must not be the other way around—just making it compulsory for the kids,” says cofounder of SP Robotic Works. Decoding the hysteria around coding for children in India, Priya concedes that the way it (coding) is being communicated to the parents, and the kind of FOMO being created, is probably not going in the right direction. “But if a kid embraces coding, it will be useful for her future,” she says. 

Started in 2012 by Pranavan and Sneha Priya, SP Robotic Works is an online edutainment company that specialises in providing experiential learning to students between the ages of 7 and 17, in latest technologies such as robotics, coding, drone, AI, VR and IoT. The idea is to promote STEM education (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) through AI-powered online learning platforms. “We have robotic courses designed in such a way that the child gets an exposure to all the components at an early age,” she says.

SP Robotic Works, which has over 80 branches across India apart from overseas presence, added one lakh students post pandemic. Stressing that the problem in the education system starts from an early age, when a child doesn’t get exposure or is not empowered to make the right choice later on, Priya contends that there are millions of engineers who made wrong decisions in opting for such a profession. “They were not given the right exposure at the right age,” she says, adding that career changes could’ve happened if the child had been exposed to options early on. Today, she lets on, if you ask any engineer or anybody the reason to opt for engineering, all of them will say it was

Among Us Now Has Cheaters, But A Fix Is In The Works

Among Us players have started to experience different types of cheating when they hop into matches. Thanks to cheaters, players have had their nicknames edited, their entire crews ejected at the start of the match, and had games where there was an extra impostor. In a game that places so much emphasis on meta-gaming and trust, this is a substantial issue. The three person studio Innersloth has been trying to tackle the problem. It recently explained how it’s hoping to do so.

“We’re rushing to get an account system in place so we can have better moderation and reporting systems built around that,” Among Us programmer Forest Willard told Kotaku. “Also getting help with making the servers better at detecting and blocking hacks. And investigating client-side hack prevention as well. I’m sort of scrambling to get all the right people in place, but I’m attacking it from multiple angles so it can get better in many ways hopefully all at once.”

There is no reward, cosmetic or otherwise, for winning in Among Us, which makes the presence of cheaters and griefers particularly odd. Bragging rights have a sort of intangible value, of course. But if you are cheating, what are they for?

Among Us saw a huge uptick in players over the last few months after multiple streamers broadcasted the game. The popularity, just like Fall Guys before it, brought a number of cheaters to the online game. Innersloth didn’t expect any of this success so they are racing to get basic features, like accounts, set up. The studio cancelled their planned sequel in order to focus on improving the current game. The features that were going to come to the sequel will be implemented into Among Us. It should help to keep the community together.

While Innersloth works to

Google Assistant Now Works With Android Apps

Google announced that now it’s possible to use Google Assistant with third-party apps on Android phones. So, Android users will be able to search and control their third-party apps when they ask it to Google Assistant. Google is rolling out the ability to search apps, use voice commands for popular tasks like sending text messages, ask for the news on Twitter, or browsing your shopping cart. For example, you can now say, “Hey Google, search cozy blankets on Etsy” and get right to what you’re looking for. Or if you’re looking for something (or someone) specific within an app, just say, “Hey Google, open Selena Gomez on Snapchat.” 

Previously, Google Assistant’s third-party support was largely limited to some custom actions, mostly apps that run within Assistant. With the new functionality, Google Assistant will work directly with apps that you have installed on your phone. Now, these kinds of voice commands will work with more than 30 of the top apps on Google Play. “People do a lot more with their apps beyond simply opening and searching within apps, and we want to enable voice commands to those frequent tasks, too. Now you can do things like playing music, starting a run, posting on social media, ordering food, paying back a friend, hailing a ride—the list goes on and on—all with just your voice. Starting today, you can try doing more using your voice with more than 30 of the top apps on Google Play available in English globally, with more apps coming.” Google states. 

Google Assistant brings new functionality to most common tasks as well. For your most common tasks, you can create custom shortcut phrases. So instead of saying, “Hey Google, tighten my shoes with Nike Adapt,” you can create a shortcut to just say, “Hey Google, lace it.”

Squadrons’, And I Hope It Works

Star Wars Squadrons is a game. Developed by Motive and published by EA, it released on October 2 to solid reviews and plenty of praise from long time fans of Star Wars starfighter games, the likes of which we haven’t seen for a good long time. It costs $40, and it’s available on PS4, PC, and Xbox One. And, as far the story of where this game is going, that’s sort of it. Here in 2020, that’s a remarkable thing.

Bug fixes and the like aside, EA and Motive have no plans to introduce new content for Star Wars Squadrons, a strategy that’s nearly unheard of in the modern industry for anything but smaller, bite-sized indie games. Creative director Ian Frazier outlined the approach in an interview with Upload VR, where he doesn’t completely close the door to more stuff—the video game industry is rarely definitive—but sounds pretty resolute in the studio’s strategy.

“We don’t want to say ‘it’s almost done!’ and then dribble out more of it over time, which to be honest is how most games work these days,” he told UploadVR. “So we’ve tried to treat it in kind of an old-school approach saying, ‘you’ve paid the $40, this is the game and it’s entirely self-contained. We’re not planning to add more content, this is the game, and we hope you understand the value proposition.'”

It’s funny to think that selling a game for a price and having that just be the end of it seems like such a radical idea, because that’s how game’s were sold for the majority of the industry’s lifetime and it makes a sort of basic sense in a way that “releasing a ton of new maps and such for free” doesn’t. But it’s incredibly uncommon,