With digital assistants getting better at talking to other apps and completing tasks for the user every day, Samsung Electronics is gearing up to make the second edition of its voice-powered personal assistant Bixby uniform across smart home devices starting next year.
Slated to launch in 2018, Bixby 2.0 will be 'ubiquitous', 'personalised' and an 'open' digital assistant, the company said.
The South Korean technology giant is focusing deeply on adding Bixby's Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities to various OS platforms including Tizen, to bridge the gap between uniformity of its personal assistant across smartphones, home speakers, refrigerators and televisions and also take on its rivals such as Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and Apple Siri.
"We are developing multiple technologies such as authentication technology, and wake up technology which will make a task such as even waking up Bixby easier," Ji Soo Yi, Vice-President, Mobile Communications Business, Samsung Electronics, told IANS during a media interaction here.
Samsung's vision is to make the second iteration of Bixby a tool that becomes a daily part of everyone's life by learning more about the user and deliver personalised results, Ji said.
The company is making its digital assistant open source by giving developers the opportunity to choose and create their own software across application domains such as sports, food, entertainment and travel which could increase the software's appeal.
"We are aiming to lift the bar (in respect to digital assistants) as much as possible. Based on our current architecture, we are very confident that we have lifted the bar with Bixby 2.0," he added.
However, the company has not announced when it will roll out Bixby 2.0 for its Tizen-based smartphones, and other line-up of devices.
Samsung debuted Bixby assistant on its flagship Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones earlier this year.
The smart assistant was introduced in India last month and has been optimised to understand Indian accent, Samsung India had earlier said.
The Bixby voice capabilities for the Indian consumers were developed at Samsung Research & Development Institute in Bengaluru (SRI-B) -- Samsung's largest R&D facility outside South Korea.
According to market research firm Counterpoint Research, the South Korean major continues to lead the Indian smartphone market with a share of 22.8 per cent in the third quarter of 2017.
Samsung is the leader with 23 per cent share in the feature phone segment too, followed by Itel at 13 per cent and Micromax at 11 per cent.
(Krishna SinhaChaudhury is in Seoul at the invitation of Samsung. She can be contacted at email@example.com)