Samsung Electronics’ voice-activated digital assistant Bixby will support Google apps, the company revealed during CES, the consumer electronics show held every January in Las Vegas.
According to a report in VentureBeat, citing a keynote presentation during CES, in the beginning, Bixby will be able to support Google Maps, Google Play, YouTube and Gmail. The report noted that it’s not clear how the support for Google apps will be integrated into Bixby.
VentureBeat noted that earlier in the week, Samsung announced that Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa will be supported on all of the TVs the consumer electronics giant produces, including its recently announced OLED TVs. The push on the part of Samsung to provide more uses for Bixby comes as it has been in catch-up mode behind Alexa and Google Assistant, which have taken off in a much bigger fashion than Bixby.
Bixby has made inroads since it debuted in 2017 on the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus and struggled to get the digital assistant right. Today, it is available in more than 200 counties and is integrated into many more devices, including Samsung’s Family Hub 2.0 refrigerators and its latest generation of smart TVs, noted VentureBeat. Still, the report noted that Bixby can perform thousands of actions compared to the millions that Google Assistant can perform.
In addition to supporting Google apps, earlier this month a report surfaced that Samsung was gearing up to roll out another smart speaker in 2019 that will complement its Galaxy Home speaker. The Galaxy Home speaker pricing hasn’t been revealed yet, but analysts expect it to be in the range of Apple’s $349 HomePod, because it features AKG audio and eight microphones, among other features. The second speaker is expected to be priced lower and go up against Amazon Echo and Google Home, which sell for under $200.