Samsung likely has a secret plan to take on Apple’s next-gen phone with its next big launch, the Galaxy S8. It seems the Korean firm has identified a plan of attack that will expose what has been a major weakness for Apple, notes Tom’s Guide. Samsung, which desperately needs to make a comeback, has likely chosen to build it around artificial intelligence, a hot corner of the technology market.

galaxy s8 concept display
Image Source: TechDroider/YouTube

Samsung’s AI to use Viv Labs’ tech

Apple has left Samsung behind when it comes to this year’s device with the iPhone 7 getting the advantage from the failure of the Galaxy Note 7, which has been burning or exploding. However, the Korean smartphone maker is in no mood to make such mistakes again and is preparing well to compete with the next iPhone – the iPhone 8.

Samsung’s next device, the Galaxy S8, will include a new artificial intelligence digital assistant and leverage Samsung’s acquisition of Viv Labs, Reuters reports. Viv Labs was headed by Dag Kittlaus, co-creator of Siri.

Samsung Executive Vice President Rhee Injong told Reuters that there is a handful of third-party apps and services with which Apple’s Siri works, but Samsung’s product will allow developers to attach and upload services “to our agent.” Injong said that the Galaxy S8’s AI service will feature technology from Viv Labs, and the services it will offer will be significantly different from those made by competitors.

Injong added that the agent will continue to get smaller as more services are added to it. Samsung plans to expand its voice assistant services to wearables and home appliances, notes Reuters.

The Wall Street Journal claims that the Galaxy S8 could also have a dedicated button for launching the digital assistant. Though sources say that the prototypes are not final yet, there is reportedly a button on the edge of the smartphone in the latest versions.

Galaxy S8 delayed?

This may sound like good news for Samsung fans, but there is one piece of bad news too. People hoping for a launch at the Mobile World Congress in February will be disappointed to know that the Korean firm has pushed the launch of the S8 back to April, as per The WSJ.

Samsung has not been able to identify the cause of the Galaxy Note 7 fires, resulting in a huge loss of more than $5 billion for the company. Hence, it makes sense for the company to postpone its next smartphone.

Samsung is making sincere efforts to ensure that its next product is a hit with consumers, and the delayed launch is evidence of that. Though it is the world’s largest smartphone maker by sales, the failure of the Galaxy Note 7 has left it in dire need of a rebound.

Apple’s iPhone 8 will likely come sometime in September 2017, which means there will still be a lot of time for Samsung’s device to gain some momentum. Rumors about Apple’s next device are already heating up, and based on those, it will be difficult for the Galaxy S8 to challenge the iPhone 8 unless there is a Viv-powered assistant.

AI – a growing tech

The market for digital assistants is growing, and the fact that Samsung is tweaking the design of its most important product line to highlight this one feature underscores that it is counting upon digital assistants for growth. Speaking on an analyst call late last month, the Korean firm said that its next device, the Galaxy S8, will include an improved AI service.

Major tech companies such as Apple, Microsoft and Amazon have already released their digital assistant services, namely, Siri, Cortana and Alexa, respectively. Alphabet’s Google also released its Assistant service last month, notes The WSJ. Samsung’s rivals have made huge investments for the development of smart digital assistants that will be capable of answering questions and placing orders for pizza or taxi rides.

Samsung already has a virtual-assistant service known as S Voice. It was introduced in 2012 with the Galaxy S3, but since then, no major updates to the service have been announced. Even during the release of the Galaxy S7 earlier this year, the company did not mention it.