The Bixby-powered Galaxy Home speaker will launch in April, Samsung said. Samsung's AI platform Bixby is still a minor player in the virtual assistant market, with just a fraction of the audience that Google, Amazon and Apple enjoy. Still, Samsung continues to invest in Bixby's capabilities and its reach. At the Galaxy S10 Unpacked event on Wednesday, Samsung announced that Bixby is now officially available in four new European languages. And speaking with ZDNet's sister site CNET, Samsung co-CEO DJ Koh on Wednesday said the Galazy Home -- a Bixby-powered smart speaker -- will finally launch in April.
When Samsung launched its Bixby digital assistant with the Galaxy S8, some basic features were missing, and they were slow to arrive. On top of that, Bixby was installed alongside the well-established Google Assistant, prompting questions as to whether it was really necessary to add another digital assistant to an already crowded market. Samsung may have realized Bixby's shortcomings as a digital assistant, but with Bixby 2.0 the Korean tech giant is hardly backing down. Bixby 2.0 is the lead element of Samsung's bid to build its own ecosystem of connected devices and services. The new Bixby strategy is vastly different from what came before it, which is why we've chosen to publish this article to accompany our original Bixby cheat sheet, which focuses more on its digital assistant features.
Samsung is rumored to be building its own smart speaker, which will be powered by its Bixby voice assistant. The development of the device is said to have slowed down due to the lack of progress with Bixby. Samsung's smart speaker is said to be codenamed as Vega, according to The Wall Street Journal (via The Verge). Unfortunately, the WSJ's report didn't include details about the smart speaker's specifications, nor did it provide a timeframe for when consumers can expect it to be released. What was made certain about the report is the development of project Vega is being slowed down.
Samsung has just acquired Korean artificial intelligence startup Fluenty, and the acquisition has already sparked rumors that the tech giant could be planning an upgrade for its AI assistant Bixby. The acquisition comes in the wake of the announcement that the company has named a new chief to lead its software development department.