Samsung’s built-in voice assistant is Bixby, but unfortunately the little assistant has not earned a large fan base. This is in part because of its limited functionality compared to larger assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant (and even Siri). Samsung is unveiling an alternative solution to users who don’t want to use Bixby in the new next-generation Family Hub smart refrigerator: Amazon Alexa.
Alexa is a more powerful option with broader functionality beyond the basic options included in the Family Hub. The hub allows you to control other smart devices in your home, stream music to create the perfect mood while cooking, mirror your TV screen so dinner doesn’t interrupt your binge-watching, find recipes, share pictures and even order groceries.
You can control the Family Hub via the refrigerator itself or via the SmartThings app. It recently added the SmartThings Cooking platform. The platform can make recommendations based on your personal food preferences and you can add ingredients that you have or need. It can even help you create a weekly meal plan that takes into account the ingredients you have on hand.
In addition to food-related activities, you can use the Family Hub to leave notes for your family, sync calendars, and even post videos. Samsung has also won a new shopping partner in Perdue Farms, a provider that enables users to order high-quality meat and poultry products. You also have full access to all Alexa services.
What sets the new Family Hub apart (aside from the inclusion of Alexa) is that both Alexa and Bixby can be used together. You don’t have to choose one or the other; In fact, you can use them at the same time. This is the sixth generation of the Family Hub, and each model has added more features and built on those of the previous models.
The new version of the Family Hub starts on July 21st. The price per model depends on the size of the refrigerator you choose and the number of doors. The good news is that the new features are available for the widest range of refrigerators possible, including Samsung’s 4-door flex refrigerator.