Samsung Bixby Smart Speaker; Do We Need Another One?

Samsung says the smart speaker will be better in terms of output and device integration.


Samsung Bixby Smart Speaker

As per a technology website, Samsung’s much anticipated Bixby Speaker will land early in 2018. The smart speaker from Samsung will go against the likes of Amazon Echo, Apple Homepod and Google Home.

Samsung has said that the Bixby Speaker will largely focus on a more premium audio output and a better integration with SmartThings, the smart home network from Samsung in order to differentiate it from the other offerings in the market..

Samsung says, the speaker will work seamlessly with Samsung phones as well as their televisions and various other connected gadgets.


Do We Need Another Smart Speaker?

Samsung is a late entrant in the segment of smart speakers, and Bixby as a digital assistant still lags by miles, when compared to Google Assistant, Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri. With so many options already available, it will be hard for Samsung to find a place in the market. In India, only Echo speakers are available as of now, with Google looking to launch their Home Smart Speakers by early 2018.

What’s New About Samsung’s Bixby?

Short version, there’s nothing new. But Samsung says the smart speaker will be better in terms of output and device integration, and the Bixby Speaker will perform better than others.

The device will use Bixby 2.0 and will serve as a companion to Galaxy smartphones and Samsung’s IoT products, the SmartThings subsidiary.

The smart speaker is expected to cost around $200 (approx. Rs. 13,000/-). Samsung is planning for a global release including U.S. quite soon. But the India launch will probably take some more time.

Echo Vs. Bixby

Amazon Echo is currently available in the market and Google Home Speakers will get a launch in early 2018. The delayed Homepod from Apple is also scheduled to launch globally early next year.

At Rs.13,000/-, Bixby will be much more expensive than Echo, but cheaper than Apple’s HomePod, which starts at $349 (around Rs. 28,000/-). It is being expected to go on sale early next year.

Samsung is working hard to improve Bixby. Presently the Echo, with Alexa, is a much better option. So far the Amazon Echo manages to emerge as a better alternative with better price, better features and with a better digital assistant.

Can Bixby Be A Potential Digital Assistant?

Bixby is aiming to change the equation of smart speakers market and wants to lure customers away from Google Home and Echo. In terms of size, the device sits between Amazon Echo and Apple’s HomePod. It will be available with different colour variants.

In a world ruled by Google, there’s hardly anyone better. But, Amazon’s Alexa has come a long way, and its recent local customizations for India has made it even more appealing. Siri is not yet perfect, but it is managing to hold on. Bixby still has a long way to go before it can catch up. Just a better output and better IoT integration won’t do the trick for Samsung.

It remains to be seen whether Samsung’s Smart Speaker manages to find its own place in an already crowded market.

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