Along with the official introduction of Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus smartphones, Samsung has presented a new smart home service that will allow users easily manage their smart home IoT devices from a single app.
Called Samsung Connect, the app can be used to control the status of their connected devices at a single dashboard and change their settings from one screen. It can also be used to turn IoT devices on and off and schedule tasks for your home appliances. You can, for instance, tell your washing machine to start working and set time at which you’re leaving the house.
Samsung Connect is similar to Apple’s Home app that was introduced with iOS 10 last year. Both services let users to monitor all compatible devices. The app can be downloaded via the Play Store and will be available only on Galaxy S8 smartphones. According to the company, the app will become available on other Android devices by the end of the year.
To address connectivity issues, South Korean tech giant also introduced a new smart home hub called Samsung Connect Home. The device is a Wi-Fi router that serves as a hub for connecting all IoT devices in a user’s home.
It can also act as a hub for appliances running on other IoT networks, such as Z-Wave, ZigBee, and Bluetooth Low Energy. Users can acquire additional router to create a mesh network, what makes it similar to Google Wifi or the Eero. The price of the device as well as its release date has not been revealed yet.
Samsung Connect Home can connect to any of the products in the SmartThings line, including IoT Samsung devices, Netgear Arlo security cameras and Philips Hue light bulbs.
Additionally, the company has revealed Bixby, a new smart voice assistant to rival Apple’s Siri. Samsung is planning to integrate the service into its own connected devices and let third-party manufacturers create devices that are compatible with Bixby.
With the new voice assistant, you’ll be able to change the temperature in your home by simply speaking to a smartphone. Besides, you’ll be able to ask your fridge to turn on the washing machine, or tell your lights to start the oven, because it will be the same Bixby on all devices.
The platform will come with support for Korean and American English only. Samsung is currently working with partners to enable the virtual assistant manage other apps and devices.