Samsung has recently announced their take on the smart speaker – the Vega.
We don’t know much about the speaker’s features, but it’s clear Bixby, Samsung’s voice assistant, will power the device. Bixby first appeared in Samsung’s Galaxy S8, which allowed users to identify landmarks or shop for products from photos.
With the mixed reviews of the S8, it’s clear that Samsung needs to develop Bixby more for the Vega. As the number of Americans with voice-activated home assistants approaches 35.6 million, Samsung will only challenge the other home assistants like the Echo if they’re able to provide a fully functional virtual assistant.
Bixby doesn’t share the impressive track record. Technical issues prevented the AI from being available on the Samsung Galaxy S8 for a month after the phone’s release.
Despite some of the initial problems, Samsung’s approach to smart phone virtual assistants is rather interesting. Focusing more on in-app actions, Bixby puts object-recognition technology into S8’s native apps.
Features like Bixby Vision and Bixby Search allow users of the S8 to identify objects and places in pictures. Bixby also provides nearby restaurant recommendations or available locations if the photo was of a product. Users can even create photo albums through the phone’s virtual assistant.
Although little was included in the WSJ’s report, it indicates that the device will not be available before late July. Hopefully, Samsung can produce other features to distinguish the device.