In a bid to take on Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri, Samsung will allow developers to build apps for Bixby, its own voice-activated assistant, this November, reports CNBC.
Bixby currently works on Samsung’s phones, home entertainment hardware, and smart home appliances to let you do things like search on your phone, check if your laundry’s done, and turn on the TV.
But it’s still a long way from catching up with Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa – both of which support a wide range of products from numerous brands, and also allow for many more uses. Alexa has been open to developers for years now, and has accumulated thousands of ‘Skills’ to run apps and services with just a voice command.
The move marks Samsung’s latest attempt to differentiate itself from its competition, which has left the company in the dust thus far. Bixby holds just 6.2 percent of the market when it comes to smart assistants, according to a report earlier this year from Business Insider. The same report shows Apple dominating with nearly 46 percent of the market, and Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa making up the majority of the remaining share.
Samsung certainly has the install base to make up for lost ground if it can make Bixby a legitimate force in the voice assistant game. The company accounts for 20 percent of all smartphones sold worldwide, the largest share held by an individual vendor, according to Statista.com. However, the company has been losing ground as it falls behind in features and has an increasing number of competitors offering similar products at comparable prices.