Tuesday March 21, 2017

Samsung Unveils Bixby, Its Siri Competitor

Samsung has officially announced Bixby, its new AI assistant for mobile and IoT. It will be joining the likes of Alexa, Cortana, Siri, and other voice-powered assistants already out on the market but is unique in that it will let users control almost anything in an app and let them jump between voice and touch commands. Bixby is expected to go into everything from phones and TVs to fridges and air conditioners.

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Bixby seems different on a conceptual level: It's meant to serve as a new voice-based interface for controlling your apps, rather than just something that you can ask a few questions. "Instead of humans learning how the machine interacts with the world (a reflection of the abilities of designers), it is the machine that needs to learn and adapt to us," Samsung senior vice president InJong Rhee wrote in a blog post. Yes, that all reads a bit like a buzzword salad, but there's definitely a need for a different sort of virtual assistant. Siri has mostly been a disappointment, and Google Assistant is still getting off the ground.