Competition may be good for the soul, but so is collaboration. Samsung said at an earnings call earlier Wednesday that working with its often-partner, sometimes-rival Google will make artificial intelligence better on a range of devices.
“Samsung and Google will have to continue to maintain their strategic partnership to nurture the AI and the market for the emerging technology,” Samsung Mobile VP Lee Kyeong-tae said, as reported by The Investor, a South Korean publication associated with The Korea Herald.
The call to collaborate comes at a time when Samsung is rumored to bring the AI assistant “Bixby” to its phone . The use of AI is heating up on phones, with phonemakers from Huawei to HTC introducing their own takes. Google, too, has already gotten a head start with its Google Assistant for the . If Google’s AI played a role in the Pixel’s success, then it be a win-win for Samsung and Google to work together: Samsung gets the smarts, Google gets more data to keep improving.
Samsung’s AI assistant wouldn’t be limited to the Galaxy S8, either. Bixby could come to the company’s tablets, TVs and laptops, too. In addition, Samsung may offer its AI to third-party developers, much as Amazon did with Alexa, The Investor noted.
Investing in AI may also be a way for Samsung to diversify its efforts. After Samsung was (almost literally) burned by the Note 7, the company said it will work on other technology in addition to phones.
“Although the growth of the global smartphone market is expected to slow this year, new services such as artificial intelligence will be a differentiating factor,” Samsung said in a press release. Adding features like AI to high-end models is one way for the company to try to outpace competitors.