Let’s cut right to the chase: At this week’s Samsung Developer Conference, the event’s namesake announced a bunch of really cool new stuff.
And we’ll get to it — I promise.
But before we do, I want to point out what really resonated with me — perhaps even more than all of the neat new products and features: the emerging topics and trends.
These are things that many of we marketers, in our day-to-day run and responsibilities, don’t dedicate much thought to. Things like, say, a virtual-assistant-equipped refrigerator, or the most recent and greatest software growth kits( SDK ).
But it’s time that we do. Suppose about some of the pieces to new technologies or up-and-coming topics that, maybe five years ago, we believed had nothing to do with us. Those of us who dismissed them rapidly fell behind the curve. And so, over the next few weeks, I’ll be dissecting the following topics and breaking down why they’re important for marketers to keep an eye on.”
So let’s stay ahead of it. In addition to the below summing-up of everything that was announced at the Samsung Developer Conference, over the next few weeks, I’ll be dissecting the related topics — breaking down why they’re important for marketers to keep an eye on.
Here Are the Samsung Announcements You Missed
To set Bixby in context, some describe it as Samsung’s version of Siri, Alexa, or Google Assistant. It is, in fewer terms, Samsung’s own virtual assistant, and it’s becoming increasingly built into a range of the brand’s products to generate what it calls an “intelligent ecosystem.”
Bixby isn’t precisely new — but Bixby 2.0, which took centre stage at the opening keynote and subsequent breakout conferences, is. One of the biggest differentiators for 2.0, said Vice President and Service Intelligence Team Leader Brad Park, is that it’s open, which essentially means that its code is available to developers to use, modify, and redistribute by way of something original that they use it to build. That accessibility will begin with a private beta program and become available to the general public in 2018.
The process, he said, was to “make everything voice-first … and then, assure what the user wants.” That’s important — remember, this event is first and foremost designed for developers. Within the frameworks of that remark from Park, that’s why w the open source nature of the Bixby SDK is so important. By making it open, developers will be able to personalize the technology in a way that helps determine how users actually want to, well, use it.
Yay, a Bixby demo! Rhee is showing how it runs by asking assistant to bring up photos of his daughter( whoas serving in Iraq ). aProud dad.a pic.twitter.com/ qnvUIksh1I
a Amanda Zantal-Wiener (@ Amanda_ZW) October 18, 2017
And as marketers, that’s which is something we potentially play a vital role. It’s our job, in big portion, to understand and reach the end user — and now, we have a greater possibility than ever to partner with developers to reach these users in an innovative way.
The other main emphasis, however, was on Bixby’s availability across a number of devices — like Samsung Smart TVs and the Family Hub refrigerator — which is where the ecosystem comes into play. That’s where another key differentiator of Bixby 2.0 — the aforementioned “voice search” approach, which dedicates it better natural language capabilities that can help it distinguish between users.
That was one of the biggest early issues that users took with Alexa, for example, showing the growing influence of a demand for personalization. But it goes beyond voice recognition — Bixby use machine learning, too, to anticipate what individual end users will ask it to do.
2) The Internet of Things
First, a brief vocabulary lesson. The Internet of Things( IoT) is the technology that uses internet connectivity to allow in-home devices and appliances — like your illuminations, security system, or refrigerator — to be controlled remotely by devices like our telephones. In other words, it’s the thing that allows you to turn your suns on or off from your telephone when you’re out of town.
Okay, back to that “intelligent ecosystem” and where Bixby plays a role within it. Previously, Samsung had a handful of fragmented IoT platforms: SmartThings( a suite of products that would help “smartify” the otherwise unplugged or “dumb” things in your home ), Samsung Connect( the automation system that allowed users to actually execute the smart technology ), and ARTIK( the platform that are linked and adds security to all of the pieces of a user’s IoT experience ).
But during the opening keynote, Samsung announced the cohesive SmartThings Cloud, which brings all of the above under a single hub that allows all of these previously fragmented IoT pieces under one, central “touchpoint.”
Here, again, is where the ability for Bixby to be broadly applied and personalized becomes crucial. Within the announcements pertaining to these new IoT initiatives came the unveiling of Project Ambience: a noticeably small dongle that is likely to be plugged into home objects and devices — like an everyday speaker, for example — and turn them into “smart, ” connected devices that are equipped with the Bixby experience.
a Amanda Zantal-Wiener (@ Amanda_ZW) October 18, 2017
So, why does that matter to you? Think about it: as the technology to turning anything into our homes into something that’s “smart” and connected , not only will it become increasingly easier for users to request and receive information, but the demand for quick solutions will also continue to grow. We’ll get into the specifics of how marketers can leverage these developments in future posts, but for now, it’s surely an area to watch.
3) An AR Partnership With Google
If you read the previous section and suppose, “Sounds like Samsung might be trying to play on Google’s playing field, ” you’re not alone. I had the same thought — and then came the proclamation of a partnership.
Surprisingly, there weren’t any explicit product announcements about virtual reality, which came as a personal surprise given the heavy presence of the Samsung Gear at last week’s Oculus Connect event. But to continue its progress within VR, Samsung implied, it has to also focus on constructing an augmented reality( AR) presence.
And that induces sense. Throughout last week’s Oculus Connect keynote, for example, numerous speakers spoke to the importance of attaining VR accessible, but failed to identify the tangible and incremental steps they would take to make it so. AR, which will be available on a significant number of recent telephone models from a variety of manufacturers, is something of a gateway to VR, especially when it comes to an untethered( not necessitating connection to a larger piece of hardware) experience.
Now, Samsung has partnered with Google for yet another open source initiative. Developers will have access to Google’s ARCore SDK to create AR experiences that will be available on such Samsung devices as the Samsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8 +, and Galaxy Note8.
a Karissa Bell (@ karissabe) October 18, 2017
Pardon the pun, but this move seems, well, smart. It could be interpreted as a response to Apple’s ARKIT, which provides developers with open source code to make AR experiences for Apple devices — namely, the iPhone and iPad.
Here’s another opportunity for marketers to leverage this information availability to create immersive experiences for their audiences. Not ready to build a full-blown VR experience? Start with AR. It will likely be available to a larger pool of users( after all, they can access it right from their mobile devices ), and allows them to integrate your product or service into their respective surroundings, just by downloading an app.
I mean … I’m aroused. As both a marketer and a journalist, these developments are huge. And if you take advantage of them now, I might even deem you a trailblazer — and your peers likely will, too.
But there’s still about half a day left of the Samsung Developer Conference, so feel free to follow along with all of the cool stuff I’m learning about here on Twitter, or let me know if you have a question about it.
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