Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Could your Samsung tv replace your Amazon Echo?

Could your Samsung TV replace your Amazon Echo?




UWON, South Korea-- Kim Hyun-suk, who leads Samsung Electronics Co.'s push into artificial intelligence, is perplexed by the voice-activated speaker craze.

"Deep down, I wonder why everyone is talking about speakers," said Mr. Kim, the new CEO of Samsung's consumer- electronics unit, in a rare interview. The South Korean company sells half a billion devices and appliances every year.

"Isn't it the same as already having 500 million speakers out there?" Mr. Kim said.

Samsung, the world's largest maker of smartphones, TVs and semiconductors, is about to find out if that is true. Alphabet Inc.'s Google and Inc. have popularized the tabletop speaker, creating a mainstream gadget that people are comfortable speaking to. This has given the two American companies an early advantage in bringing AI into the home.

But Samsung--whose own voice-activated speaker has yet to debut--has a broader vision: It promises to put AI features and internet connectivity onto all its products by 2020.

The goal is to transform Samsung's stand-alone home appliances into an army of easier-to-use synced devices capable of fielding verbal commands. The bet, if successful, would increase consumer demand for Samsung's lineup of phones, appliances and televisions, as it fends off the growing ambitions of Silicon Valley rivals and lower-cost Chinese manufacturers.

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