World media and the interested public come to grips with the new Samsung Galaxy Note 9 and its distinctive pen
World media and the interested public come to grips with the new Samsung Galaxy Note 9 and its distinctive pen David Kirkpatrick

Bixby, the virtual assistant, could become your friend

IF Samsung gets its way, Bixby won't necessarily replace your best friend, but it will definitely become one of them.

Bixby is the voice activated 'virtual assistant' Samsung launched in 2017 and has been greatly enhanced with the release of the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 today in Brooklyn.

Samsung wants its devices to become more conversational and useful and brought inside your home.

Ji Soo Yi, Samsung's vice president of Artificial Intelligence Strategy said the simple aim of Bixby was to "help you get things done".

In a series of snappy demonstrations he got Bixby to find out what concerts were in Brooklyn over the Labour Day weekend, asked about nearby restaurants and got Bixby to make a booking and then priced a ride to JFK Airport and ordered the car to pick him up.

"Bixby won't replace your friend, but its designed to do similar things," he said.

Samsung is talking up a seamless digital ecosystem, where devices are interlinked and can take you from home, to the car, bus, train, bike or walk to work and back again.

Samsung has forged a new partnership which will see the world's most popular game Fortnite on its products
Samsung has forged a new partnership which will see the world's most popular game Fortnite on its products David Kirkpatrick

Whether its a smartphone, television, fridge, tablet, watch or even its new smart stereo speaker, which was given a blast today, but isn't due to be launched until early next year, Samsung want to help power your day.

Samsung unveiled its latest smartphone, the Galaxy Note 9 and its very schmick Galaxy Watch, which has the look and feel of a very smart watch but one that can also monitor your heart rate and tell you when you are getting stressed.

It gave a sneak peek at its smart speakers which will give companies like Sonos a run for their money when they are launched early next year.

Samsung's speakers are rounded, sleek and sexy and you can 'talk' to your speakers and let them know where you are in the room so it can direct your beats that way.

Some key strategic partnerships were also announced by Samsung.

The first is with Epic Games, who are the makers of the most popular game in the world right now which is Fortnite.

The second is with music streaming company Spotify, which will greatly enhance the lure of Samsung's sexy new smart speakers when they are launched.

Look out for start up deals with both of those.

 

Everyone wanted to come to grips with Samsung's new product at launch of Galaxy Note 9 in Brooklyn
Everyone wanted to come to grips with Samsung's new product at launch of Galaxy Note 9 in Brooklyn David Kirkpatrick

But it was the Galaxy Note 9 smartphone that took centre stage at Brooklyn's giant Barclay Centre

To 'oohs' and 'aahs' and spontaneous applause from the tech-savvy crowd, DJ Koh, the head of Samsung's mobile business, thanked Note users for their passion, insight and "constant inspiration".

"We love nothing better than creating the next Note," he said.

'We are motivated by a desire to do more."

He concluded on a humble note.

"It's not easy every year, frankly speaking," he said.

"Let me say thank you.

"There is no one like you and there is nothing like the Note."

The Galaxy Note 9 is available for pre-order now before its general launch on August 24.


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