Story image

Samsung wades into AI waters with latest acquisition

07 Oct 2016

In a move that puts the tech company in prime AI position, Samsung has agreed to acquire Viv Labs - a startup that has developed an open artificial intelligence (AI) platform for digital assistants.

Viv Labs was founded by AI visionaries Dag Kittlaus, Adam Cheyer and Chris Brigham who will continue to work closely with the Samsung Team. The startup will also continue to operate independently.

With Viv, Samsung says it will be able to unlock and offer new service experiences for its customers, including one that simplifies user interfaces and understands the context of the user.

Injong Rhee, CTO of Mobile Communications at Samsung says that unlike other existing AI-based services, Viv has a sophisticated natural language understanding, machine learning capabilities and strategic partnerships that will enrich a broader service ecosystem.

“Viv was built with both consumers and developers in mind,” he says.

“This dual focus is also what attracted us to Viv as an ideal candidate to integrate with Samsung home appliances, wearables and more, as the paradigm of how we interact with technology shifts to intelligent interfaces and voice control.”

According to Samsung, Viv’s platform combined with its own leading devices, services and global resources will help drive the next generation of AI solutions.

Dag Kittlaus, co-founder and CEO of Viv Labs, says his company is building the simplest way for anyone to talk to devices and services everywhere.

“We see a future that is decidedly beyond apps - where you can get what you need quickly and easily no matter where you are, or what device you are near,” he explains.

“Samsung offers us a unique opportunity to deliver a single conversational interface to the world’s apps and services across a diverse range of products, at global scale.”

Samsung’s Global Innovation Center led the acquisition for Samsung’s Mobile Communications business.

Jacopo Lenzi, SVP of Business Development and Strategic Acquisitions says the company is always looking for startups with a compelling vision and breakthrough experiences.

“We see great potential in the Viv AI software and platform, and we’re excited for Viv to reach our millions of users through Samsung’s global presence and distribution.”

HPE launches 'right mix' hybrid cloud assessment tool
HPE has launched an ‘industry-first assessment software’ to help businesses work out the right mix of hybrid cloud for their needs.
IDC: Innovative wearable use cases drive double-digit growth
Wristbands are set to lose their dominance as hearables and industrial applications keep the wearables market moving forward.
Turtle Beach buys ROCCAT, bringing more 'victories to gamers'
Germany-based Roccat already has a significant presence in Europe and Asia, which means Turtle Beach will likely take advantage of that growth. Expect to see more Turtle Beach products on the shelves. 
NVIDIA introduces a new breed of high-performance workstations
“Data science is one of the fastest growing fields of computer science and impacts every industry."
Apple says its new iMacs are "pretty freaking powerful"
The company has chosen the tagline “Pretty. Freaking powerful” as the tagline – and it’s not too hard to see why.
NZ ISPs issue open letter to social media giants to discuss censorship
Content sharing platforms have a duty of care to proactively monitor for harmful content, act expeditiously to remove content which is flagged to them as illegal.
Polycom & Plantronics rebrand to Poly, a new UC powerhouse
The name change comes after last year’s Plantronics acquisition of Polycom, a deal that was worth US $2 billion.
Bitdefender invests in A/NZ with new offices and regional director
Bitdefender has opened its Partner Advantage Network (PAN) programme with the aim of recruiting and supporting its over 500 local resellers.