Unlike a number of its rivals and pseudo-rivals, Apple seldom engages in petty arguments over the shortcomings of competing hardware or software, generally focusing on its own products both in terms of advertising and public statements.

It’s extremely rare that you’ll hear a Cupertino official mock, taunt, insult or criticize another company or device, which is why Phil Schiller’s recent words on the Amazon Echo and Google Home may come off as especially negative.

Of course, if some Samsung executive said this about the latest iPhone or Apple Watch, it’d be just another day at the office. Technically, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing didn’t even directly go after the two smart speakers in his interview with Gadgets 360, (un-) subtly suggesting they lack any sort of real-world value in his eyes.

“If you don’t have something nice to say, say nothing at all”, Schiller learned from his mother, moving the conversation to the “abstract”, as the “general concepts” behind such devices are “really interesting.”

It’s indeed very interesting to see a leading figure of the world’s largest tech outfit single out the omission of a screen as the main flaw of existing “voice-driven assistants” on the eve of the rumored Siri-powered home AI product’s launch.

It probably doesn’t get clearer than this – Apple’s Echo “killer” is coming, screen and all, as a “knight” in shining armor aiming to save you from voice limitations in navigation, photography sharing and gaming “situations.”

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