Samsung is almost ready to enter the smart speaker arena, well over a year after it first announced the Galaxy Home device alongside the Note 9.
However, it isn’t the Galaxy Home that’ll be first to market. Samsung has announced plans to launch the Galaxy Home Mini in early 2020 and it’s not clear whether the initially-revealed version of the device is still on the table.
Speaking to Bloomberg, Hyunsuk Kim, chief executive officer of Samsung’s consumer electronics division, confirmed the launch window for the Mini, but failed to mention the fate of the original Galaxy Home.
The Bloomberg report says, without quoting Kim, that the company is still debating internally whether to release the device at all.
The Galaxy Home Mini is a physically smaller version of the original, unreleased device, but still brings tuning from Samsung-owned AKG and the ability to hook up to smart home gadgets via the SmartThings platform.
For better or worse, it’ll be powered by the unloved Bixby personal assistant, although much of the work Samsung has been doing behind the scenes has been focused on bringing the AI-powered voice tech up to the standards set by Alexa, the Google Assistant and Siri.
Last August Samsung began beta testing the Galaxy Home Mini in its native South Korea as it looked to refine the experience ahead of an eventual launch.
The Mini device will likely go up against the Google Home Mini and Amazon Echo Dot in the smart speaker stakes, but it’s likely to be priced somewhat higher. Samsung is yet to reveal an official price or release date for its long-delayed entry into the smart speaker market.
Is is too late for Samsung to gain a foothold, given the amount of smart speakers already on the market? Let us know @trustedreviews on Twitter.