Samsung will launch a Bixby-powered smart speaker in the second half of 2018
Samsung will soon join the smart speakers market by launching its own device in the second half of 2018. The news was announced at MWC 2018 by the chief of Samsung Mobile – DJ Koh. The Korean company has been in the making of a speaker for a while now, but it seems like we will be seeing the results sooner rather than later.
The upcoming smart speaker will be powered by Bixby – Samsung's smart assistant, which is present on the Galaxy S8 / S8+ and the newly announced Galaxy S9 and S9+. Mr. Koh mentioned the speaker will "focus on the premium" and not try to compete with budget options like the Amazon Echo and the Google Home, but rather raise the price tag in addition to bringing in some new features. There's also the option of a tiered price model, which could lead up to a cheaper speaker with less features and a regular priced one.
Although details on the functionality are yet to be uncovered, it is safe to bet you'll be able to control the Samsung SmartThings system by using voice commands via the Bixby speaker. In case you don't know, SmartThings is Samsung's smart home ecosystem, which connects sensors, appliances and electronics into one network, allowing for easier control.
The option to control your home using entirely your voice might sound promising, but Samsung will not be the first to implement it. Google Home already gives you the option to control a big part of your smart devices at home, including light bulbs, TVs and locks, all at once, just by the use of voice commands.
The price tag of the speaker is still unknown, but insiders at Samsung have reported it to hover around the $200 mark. As mentioned, this would make the Bixby speaker more expensive than the Amazon Echo and Google Home, but also cheaper than what could be it's main rival – the Apple HomePod.
What feature would you like to see making an appearance in Samsung's smart speaker? Leave your comment below.