Samsung isn’t giving up on Bixby. Rather it is doubling down on all things Bixby in 2019. The South Korean major announced a flurry of smart home devices during its CES 2019 keynote seemingly taking things to the next level for both its consumers and the industry. All with Bixby at their helm. A couple of products that really stood out were the 98-inch QLED 8K TV and the Family Hub 4.0 refrigerator.
The most striking aspects of Samsung’s 98-inch QLED 8K TV are its Quantum Processor 8K chip and its capability to upscale any content whether you’re watching it through “a streaming service, set-top box, HDMI, USB or even mobile screen mirroring,” to near 8K through artificial intelligence. Support for the new HDMI 2.1 standard meanwhile brings future-proofing to the Samsung’s new 8K smart TV.
Earlier in the day, Apple announced that it is bringing its iTunes Movies and TV show app to Samsung TVs. iTunes has so far remained an Apple and Windows-only affair, but soon it will be available on Samsung TVs. All its 2019 smart TV models – including the 98-inch QLED 8K TV -- in 100 markets will support iTunes beginning this spring, while 2018 models will get it via a firmware update. These smart TVs will also get AirPlay 2 support in 190 markets.
Samsung is also opening its 2019 line-up of smart TVs to third-party voice assistants, namely the Google Assistant and Alexa. Even though Bixby will be the go-to assistant in all Samsung smart TVs, and Google Assistant and Alexa functionality will be limited to basics like volume control, or turning your TV on or off, it is nice to see the company bringing some flexibility to the platform. Further, Google apps such as Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps and Google Play will be coming to Bixby soon.
Moving on, Samsung’s latest smart fridge, aka the Family Hub 4.0 refrigerator, aspires to be more than just a fridge: an intelligent home assistant if you may. It supports personalized recommendations and will also ping you if you leave the door open.
“2019 is Samsung Electronics 50th anniversary, and for the last five decades, we’ve been committed to bringing meaningful innovations to consumers everywhere. In 2019, we’re taking things to the next level, and leveraging our industry leadership to make our vision of Connected Living a reality,” HS Kim, president and CEO of Consumer Electronics Division, Samsung Electronics said at CES 2019.
In addition to these, Samsung also showcased a range of products from shape-shifting micro-LEDs to dedicated gaming laptops.
For Real-Time updates on CES 2019 check out our live blog, here.