Samsung Bixby Support, SmartThings App, and More Announced at CES 2018
- Bixby has been incorporated on select Samsung IoT devices
- A unified SmartThings app will be released to control all IoT devices
- Audio equipment such as wireless speakers and sound bars also launched
Samsung announced numerous new products across several categories at CES 2018. The most notable highlight of these products was the integration of Samsung’s virtual assistant Bixby on to the company’s range of TVs and home appliances. Other announcements by Samsung include the Samsung Flip digital display, a 146-inch ‘The Wall’ TV, the Notebook 7 Spin (2018), new Family Hub refrigerators, a new washing machine, some new audio equipment, and software upgrades for platforms like SmartThings. On this last front, the company said it aims to enable AI in each of its connected devices by 2020.
Samsung Flip is the company’s latest digital flip chart display that has been designed for the enterprise market. The display supports up to four different participants that can introduce content or annotate on existing content using fingers or input from a dual-sided pen. Users can use up to 20 pages of writing area, with an embedded search button to access specific content. The Samsung Flip can be customised for portrait and landscape configurations. It has an height-adjustable stand and a compatible wall mount.
Keeping in mind enterprise utility, the Samsung Flip has a password-based protection system. Once logged in, meeting moderators and participants can download or print content and, additionally, save it on USB and other external sources.
At CES 2018, Samsung is streamlining different apps from all different product categories (including Smart TVs, Family Hub refrigerators, smartwatches) into just one. The united SmartThings app will launch in Spring 2018, as Samsung works towards its goal of enabling AI in each of their connected devices by 2020.
All current apps including Samsung Connect, Smart Home, Smart View will be integrated into the new SmartThings app to connect all IoT devices to one source. Engadget reports that a Smart Things app for the Gear S3 and Gear Sport smartwatches is also in the works.
Samsung is bringing its voice recognition assistant Bixby to select Samsung Smart TVs and Family Hub refrigerators. This will enable users to interact with IoT home appliances through voice commands. The Smart TVs will apparently have increased abilities to search for movies and other content online. On the other hand, Family Hub refrigerators are expected to offer smart features like syncing food storage with meal preparation among other ways that will help keep family members organised.
Bixby will also be incorporated into car dashboards allowing drivers to control in-car experience and other connected IoT devices through voice, touch, and gesture-based actions.
Samsung is planning to roll out Samsung Knox technology to other connected IoT devices such as Smart TVs, Smart Signages, Smart appliances, and other mobile products. The technology will include a hardware security system and firmware updates.
Family Hub Refrigerators
More than a year after Samsung unveiled the Family Hub 2.0 refrigerator range at CES 2017, the South Korean giant has announced the next-generation in the Family Hub series, including four new refrigerators taking the total count to 14. It integrates Bixby and SmartThings (mentioned above) making the refrigerators more intuitive than the previous models.
A new Deals app offers users with bargains and discounts on the stocked products in order for them to avail it directly via the loyalty card or Shopping List. Another new Meal Planner app will recommend recipes to users based on their allergies, preferences, as well as ingredients using the View Inside cameras. The next-gen Family Hub features new AKG speakers, with the option of streaming content on the refrigerator. Samsung is also expanding content on Family Hub by partnering with companies such as HomeAdvisor, Pinterest, The Weather Company, and Buzzfeed’s Tasty. The next-gen Family Hub will be available starting Spring 2018.
Samsung QuickDrive Washing Machine
The new Samsung WW6850N comes with the proprietary QuickDrive technology that claims to offer up to 35 percent faster washing compared to Samsung’s traditional washing machines. This home appliance is also IoT-ready, compatible with SmartThings, and has a Q-rator laundry virtual assistant with smart capabilities such as Laundry Recipe, Laundry Planner, and HomeCare Wizard.
Samsung NW700 Soundbar
CNET reports that the Samsung NW700 3.1 channel soundbar has been launched at CES 2018. The soundbar is about 53.5mm thick and has been designed to compliment Samsung’s sleek range of TVs. It is a 3.1 channel speaker with an onboard subwoofer. It uses ‘distortion cancelling’ technology to supposedly prevent bass frequencies from distortion.
Samsung VL5 and VL3 Wireless Speakers
The CNET report also reveals Samsung’s new VL5 wireless speaker that sports magnetic puck for volume control. The VL5 comes in Silver and Black colour variants, is around two feet long, and features AKG tuning. There are three 5-inch woofers and two tweeters for audio output. The company has apparently also unveiled a smaller VL3 wireless speaker. Both speakers are compatible with the SmartThings app and have Wi-Fi connectivity.