Samsung goes to the AI assistant party with Viv

Samsung has decided to join the AI assistant party with its purchase of California-based Viv Labs, whose staff includes members of the team that created Apple's Siri. The eventual product of this acquisition is a platform to compete with Amazon's Alexa and Google's recently announced Assistant.

Viv showed off its personal assistant technology at TechCrunch Disrupt New York in May. Kittlaus demonstrated Viv's assistant answering a number of complex queries that appear to be beyond the capabilities of existing AI assistants. Samsung plans to use Viv's technology to offer "an AI-based open ecosystem across all of its devices and services." The electronics giant hopes to simplify user interfaces and offer new services using a natural language interface. The company claims that Viv Labs operate independently, but "will work closely with Samsung's Mobile Communications business."

Viv Labs was founded by Dag Kittlaus, Adam Cheyer, and Chris Brigham in September 2012. The three men were part of the original team at Siri, Inc. before the startup was purchased by Apple in April 2010. The Siri AI assistant is now one of the central features in Apple's mobile and desktop operating systems. Samsung didn't publish the financial details pertaining the deal. The company notes that the transaction is still subject to the usual closing conditions of IP acquisitions.

Comments closed
    • Chrispy_
    • 3 years ago

    Who actually uses and trusts these automated assistants though?

    I’ve used Siri and Google Now but I much prefer to give it simple commands like “set alarm for x at 6pm” and “give me directions from here to the airport”. If I ask either Google or Siri a question with any kind of ambiguity, there’s a good chance they’ll get the wrong end of the stick.

      • ferdinandh
      • 3 years ago

      I would like to know too. I could be really handy but it has never worked for me or anyone I know.

    • MrDweezil
    • 3 years ago

    Cute, they made an app that can do what any of the OSs it’s running on can surely do better. Maybe Samsung should get their hardware back under control before taking on the software giants in a space where they have no chance.

      • Laykun
      • 3 years ago

      Yes, they should definitely get all their software engineers and get them to work on the hardware instead. Good idea!

    • DPete27
    • 3 years ago

    The question in that picture looks eerily familiar. Did they ask Windows’ Cortana the same thing in a demo a while ago?

    • blastdoor
    • 3 years ago

    Desperation move by Samsung. I bet they paid a ludicrously high price.

    • DragonDaddyBear
    • 3 years ago

    I wonder how long it will be before Samsung tries to seriously push their own proprietary phone OS to compete with Android and iOS.

      • neverthehero
      • 3 years ago

      Are you talking about Tizen? They seem to be running their smartwatches on this software.

        • vipw
        • 3 years ago

        Tizen is also running on many of their SmartTVs.

      • blastdoor
      • 3 years ago

      I don’t know the answer to that question, but it’s a little easier to guess how long it will take for it to fail miserably (I predict less than a year after introduction).

      • PBCrunch
      • 3 years ago

      Samsung seems to be bent on trying to re-invent everything Google does. I’m kind of surprised Samsung doesn’t have its own search engine.

    • Srsly_Bro
    • 3 years ago

    But can the AI Assistant predict when a Note 7 is going to explode?

      • CuttinHobo
      • 3 years ago

      I want to know if she curses or cries out in pain when the fire starts.

        • Neutronbeam
        • 3 years ago

        “I’M MELTING!!!!!…”

    • Neutronbeam
    • 3 years ago

    I predict the consumer product’s name will be…Viv-ID.

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