Samsung Galaxy Home Bixby Smart Speaker Announced

Paul Briden

10/08/2018 – 3:02pm

Samsung's bid for the smart speaker space is here with the Galaxy Home

As well as launching the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, Samsung used its August 9 Unpacked event in New York to reveal another much-rumoured device; the Samsung Galaxy Home.

What’s the Samsung Galaxy Home?

It’s the Samsung Bixby-powered smart speaker that’s been whispered about for a few months now. As per the rumours, it is based on AKG speaker hardware from Samsung’s acquisition of the audio specialist a while back, but is driven by Samsung’s own Bixby AI platform.

The Galaxy Home has a somewhat unique vase-shaped look compared to most of the other smart speakers we’ve seen to date, being something of a crossover between Google Home and the Apple Homepod, except it uniquely sits on a kind of tripod leg structure made from shiny metal, rather like a lamp. It’s fabric-wrapped like the mentioned competitors.

What Can Samsung Galaxy Home Do?

Samsung explained that it’s essentially aiming to corner two key aspects of the smart speaker market; the best sound quality, and a high-end, premium, and elegant design.

The top portion of the speaker has a flat top and features physical button controls for things like volume, track navigation, and power. Of course such things are primarily intended to be controlled via voice commands, but it doesn’t hurt to have a manual backup.

Rather than being one solo speaker, the Galaxy Home actually incorporates six speakers and a sub-woofer, which allows it to provide a surround-sound-like experience. It also has eight-far field microphones for voice commands, so you can for example say “Hey Bixby, play my favourite album,” and it will do so.

More than that, the speaker has a unique capability where it can follow your location in the room and project sound in your direction.

As with other rivals, such as Google Home, the Samsung Galaxy Home can form the hub of a smart home. This uses Samsung’s SmartThings hub so that the speaker can automatically sync with other smart devices, including lighting, fridges, dishwashers, doorlocks, TVs, and bigger smart sound systems, as well as, of course, smart devices you can use to control this ecosystem and link it to applications, including smartphones, watches, and tablets.

When Can I Get One? And How Much Will It Cost?

At present, Samsung is yet to reveal pricing or availability of the Samsung Galaxy Home, we just know it is “coming soon”. We’d hazard a guess that it’ll be ready in time for Christmas at the very latest.

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