Samsung Unveils Bixby 2.0 With Ambitions to Take on Amazon's Alexa
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Samsung on Wednesday announced that it is updating its digital assistant Bixby and making it available for a number of connected devices, creating a clash with Alexa Amazon and others competing for leadership in artificial intelligence.
The South Korean electronics giant, the world's largest smartphone maker, launched Bixby last year, but only for its own flagship Galaxy phones.
The new Bixby 2.0 will be open to developers to transfer a personal assistant to more devices, the company announced at a developer conference in San Francisco.
"Bixby 2.0 will be ubiquitous, available on all devices," said Samsung's executive vice president in Eui-Suk Chung in his blog.
"This means that Bixby's cloud-based intelligence acts as a control center for your device's ecosystem, including mobile phones, televisions, refrigerators, home speakers or any other related technology that you can imagine."
This step puts Samsung and Bixby directly in competition with Alexa, an artificial intelligence program that connects Amazon speakers and many third-party devices, including household appliances and cars.
Also compete in the space of Google and Microsoft, which have their own digital assistants that can be used for smart homes and related vehicles.
While Bixby's first iteration caused mixed reviews, Chun said version 2.0 would be "a powerful intellectual assistant platform that will bring a connected experience that is ubiquitous, personal and open."
He called Bixby 2.0 a "fundamental leap forward" for digital assistants.
"Today's assistants are useful, but ultimately still play a limited role in people's lives," Chung said.
"People use them to set timers and reminders, answers to trivial questions, etc. We see a world where digital assistants play a big role, an intellectual role, when one day everything from our phones to our refrigerator to ours sprinkler system, will have some kind of intelligence that will help us to interact without problems with all the technologies that we use every day. "
When Bixby was introduced, it was announced as a system for managing almost all tasks in smartphone applications to simplify the management of devices.
Samsung last year bought Viv, the launch of artificial intelligence with co-founders, who were part of the team that built the virtual assistant Siri, used in Apple devices.
Speaking at the WSJD Live conference this week, Samsung President David Aung said: "When we think about Bixby, we do not think of this as a voice gateway on one device. We think of this as a service on all devices in the home - televisions, appliances, even cars. "
The new Bixby 2.0 will be open to developers
It will be "available on any devices"
This step puts Samsung and Bixby right in the competition with Alexa
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