Samsung Electronics has announced it aims to break into the new field of voice controlled devices by introducing a smart speaker in the first half of 2018. Samsung’s smart speaker will be coming up against the likes of Apple’s HomePod, Amazon’s flagship Echo speaker and Google’s Home max.

Samsung Electronics places a strong focus on creating audio quality similar to the HomePod. Like Apple’s Siri, Bixby Samsung’s digital assistant will be a stronghold for the ecosystem of devices and services, it will also control and manage connected home appliances such as lights and locks.

 

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Samsung is considering releasing the speaker in different colours, although the prototype has a matte black colour. It does not have a screen just like Apple’s HomePod but would light up on top to give limited visual feedback. Samsung’s digital assistant Bixby which rivals Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant will run the device. The idea is to have the Bixby synchronized with TVs, Galaxy smartphones and other Samsung devices. Bixby Home is a function already available on the flagship Galaxy S8 smartphone and Note 8 device.

Tech giants are battling for a larger market share of services offered and distributed by voice assistants and voice-activated speakers. Samsung’s pricing is around $200, although it’s release date and price may likely change. Apple’s HomePod has a price list of about $349 while the Amazon’s flagship Echo speaker has a list price of $100. Samsung’s executive DJ Koh said the company is still working on improving the device’s ability to conduct voice-based web searches.

This is a guest post by Asseh Rebecca.