Apple could be angling for another way to get its Siri personal assistant into your home.
Last month, the iPhone maker debuted the HomePod, a high-end speaker with Siri built in. But if a patent just granted to Apple is any indication, the company could be looking to enable Siri with more hardware.
The patent is called “Smart dock for activating a voice recognition mode of a portable electronic device.” It details a dock with a microphone and processor.
Of course, this is just a patent. Companies file for patents all the time and nothing ever comes from them. But this one is interesting because of the intense rivalry in the voice assistant and the smart home market between Apple, Amazon, and Google.
Each of those companies has introduced voice-enabled smart speakers. But Amazon is the only one cheaper options like the Echo Dot, which has its Alexa assistant built in. Google has also indicated it wants to get its Assistant voice software into other home products.
Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.