The Cupertino, California-based technology giant never disclosed this component and the device currently lacks consumer-facing features that use it. The company has internally discussed using the sensor to determine a room’s temperature and humidity so internet-connected thermostats can adjust different parts of a home based on current conditions, according to people familiar with the situation. The hardware could also let the HomePod mini automatically trigger other actions, say turning a fan on or off, depending on the temperature.
The sensors measures 1.5 x 1.5 mm and is hidden in the bottom edge of the HomePod mini's plastic, fabric wrapped case near the power cable. iFixit confirmed the location after an inquiry from Bloomberg. The sensor is a Texas Instruments HDC2020 Humidity and Temperature Digital Sensor.
The location of the part, away from the main internal components, suggests it's for measuring the external environment. If enabled, the sensor could help Apple compete against rivals like the Amazon Echo which already features a temperature sensor.
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