Samsung's Making a Bixby-Based Speaker to Rival Amazon Echo: Report

 
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Samsung's Making a Bixby-Based Speaker to Rival Amazon Echo: Report

Highlights

  • The accumulation of big data is important for deep learning
  • Communication delay between teams in Korea and the US causing delay
  • Samsung acknowledges Bixby Voice US beta test received mix response

Samsung is said to be working on a smart speaker powered by Bixby, and with the launch, would take on Google (with the Home), Amazon (with the numerous Echo speakers), and Apple (with the recently unveiled HomePod). Separately, while Samsung was not able to meet its Spring timeline for Bixby Voice's US release, it seems like the reason for the delay has now been revealed. Samsung has reportedly said that the Bixby rollout for other languages than Korean is taking more time than initially expected due to the "lack of accumulation of big data."

First talking about the delayed Bixby Voice US release, Samsung says big data is said to be an essential requirement for deep learning and the development of Bixby Voice, as pointed out in a report by The Korea Herald. "Developing Bixby in other languages is taking more time than we expected mainly because of the lack of the accumulation of big data," a Samsung spokesperson told The Korea Herald.

Further, Samsung came to this field after other tech giants including Google, Amazon, and Apple.

Notably, Samsung Mobile Chief Koh Dong-jin earlier said that the English and Chinese versions of Bixby Voice will be launched in May and June respectively. While the English version of Bixby Voice is currently in beta in the US, the service's development is also taking time due to the delay in communication between the engineers at Samsung Research America in California and the headquarters in Korea, as per the report. The time difference between the two geographies is reportedly causing the delay in communication and effective development of the service.

As per the report, Samsung has acknowledged that Bixby Voice's English version in the US has received mixed response from the users in beta testing "due to some unsatisfactory results in terms of responding to requests and questions."

Despite facing all these issues regarding its digital assistant, Samsung is planning to launch its own intelligent speakers with built-in Bixby assistant, as per a report by WSJ. While the features of the intelligent speaker are known as of now, it will reportedly be called 'Vega'. If the company does launch its intelligent speaker, it would be following the likes of Microsoft and Apple, which recently introduced their Invoke and HomePod speakers respectively. While there is no release timeline for full rollout of Bixby Voice in the US, it is unlikely before "second half of July" as per the report, points out The Verge.

To recall, Injong Rhee, executive vice president and head of R&D, Software and Services, Samsung Electronics, said in a blog post earlier this year, "Starting with our smartphones, Bixby will be gradually applied to all our appliances." As the South Korean company has big plans for the digital assistant, its early hiccups might prove to be a concern if the situation doesn't improve in the coming months.

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