Galaxy Home is a Bixby powered smart speaker

Nick Broughall 10 August 2018 NEWS

Samsung Galaxy HomeCan Bixby take on Amazon's Alexa and Google's Assistant in the smart speaker market?

Unveiled at the end of the Unpacked event that saw the official launch of the Galaxy Note9 and Galaxy Watch, Samsung confirmed its plans to launch the Galaxy Home, a smart speaker that uses Bixby as its digital assistant.

While details about pricing and availability of the new speaker are limited, Samsung did announce that the product is being developed in conjunction with AKG for premium sound reproduction. It will house six miniature high-range speakers for 360-degree sound and an integrated subwoofer for deep bass.

Eight far-field microphones will pick up your commands using the "Hi Bixby" activation phrase, while Harman's natural sound processing will allow users to direct the audio to their location by giving a simple "sound steer" command.

The Galaxy Home will feature Samsung's Smart Things platform on board as well as the Bixby digital assistant, giving it immediate access to home automation control for devices compatible with the Smart Things platform.

Of course, the biggest question is going to be whether or not Bixby is going to be reliable enough to compete against the much more established platforms like Alexa and Google Assistant.

Unlike the other products announced at Unpacked, there's no launch window yet for the Galaxy Home, although Samsung Australia did offer that it could "confirm that Galaxy Home is planned to be available in Australia at a later date. Pricing and availability will be announced closer to the Australian launch".

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Nick Broughall travelled to New York as a guest of Samsung Australia.

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