We have heard quite a few rumors about the Bixby-powered speaker over the last month or so, which was expected to take on the Amazon Echo and Google Home, just to name a few. However, it now looks like Samsung may have had a sudden change of heart, as it might not release the device after all.
According to a report by The Investor, we won’t see a Bixby-powered speaker anytime soon because Samsung doesn’t think it’s marketable at this point (ya think?). Amazon is currently dominating the global industry with a market share of over 70 percent, followed by Google, while Samsung has only just rolled out the first version of Bixby Voice to US customers.
It would be hard for Samsung to compete with such established players so soon, especially with a device that basically offers the same features as its competitors with a vastly inferior voice assistant. Samsung apparently also doesn’t want to focus on just the South Korean market, as it is just too small and won’t bring enough money into its pocket.
Additionally, the report claims that the tech giant simply can’t afford to focus on uncertain markets because the majority of its AI specialists are currently working on developing Bixby in English and other languages.
Samsung Bixby finally gets voice support in the US, rollout begins for S8 and S8 Plus
This doesn’t mean that Samsung will never announce a Bixby-powered speaker, but just that we probably won’t see it for a while. The company will likely wait until the market grows even more and its digital assistant offers a few more features that make it stand out from the crowd. When exactly will that happen is anyone’s guess right now, and it is entirely possible that the company has decided to scrap its speaker plans altogether – we just don’t know for sure.
Samsung may take a wait-and-see attitude rather than hurriedly jumping into the uncertain market with a new device, whose functions are no different from existing devices by rivals. — Kim Jong-ki, researcher at the Korea Institute for Industrial Economics & Trade
Even though Samsung might not enter the smart speaker market, you don’t need to worry too much. There are plenty of alternatives available including the already mentioned Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers as well as all the Alexa-equipped third-party speakers on offer. Apple has also announced the HomePod, which is expected to go on sale in December, while Andy Rubin took the wraps off the Essential Home back in May.