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Samsung's IoT plan involves Siri-like system

Posted: 13 Nov 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IoT? sensors? MEMS?

The former director of Apple's Siri is taking Samsung's version of the artificial intelligence system to the next level. Luc Julia, vice president and innovation fellow at Samsung's Open Innovation Centre demonstrated Samsung Architecture for Multimodal Interactions (SAMI), the Siri-like system central to Samsung's Internet of Things (IoT) strategy, at the MEMS Executive Congress.

Julia heads the team working on SAMI, which is being developed at the centre. SAMI is an interactive artificial intelligence (AI) similar to Apple's Siri that Julia helped develop when at Apple. Samsung's SAMI, however, goes far beyond Apple's Siri by aggregating sensor data from all types and brands of IoT devices in the cloud. The open system will then allow Samsung ecosystem partners-some financed by a $100 million accelerator fund- to perform deep analytics on that data before sending smart advice back to users.

"IoT is all about sensing and collecting the dataand then transporting it [to the cloud]. Once it's there, it's about massaging it and sending it back to the user," said Julia, who described the sensing and collecting stage with the "big data" moniker, but who spoke of the machine learning and analytic engines sending data back to the user as "small data"advice that is directly relevant to people's lives.

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Figure 1: Not just for astronauts anymore: IoT wearables monitor all a person's vital signs and transmit them to the cloud for analysis.

Samsung's Open Innovation Centre in Menlo Park is one of 27 OICs worldwide, and SAMI is just one of several ongoing projects there. So far, Samsung's Menlo Park OIC is exploring possibilities with about 48 companies regarding providing the innovative sensors and actuators for wellness, smart-homes, and smart-cars, as well as the cloud-based "brains" for projects like SAMI. Samsung is engaging start-ups that it will fund with early-stage investments in the $100,000 to $2 million range from Samsung's $100 million accelerator fund.

According to Julia, who left Apple last year, there are about 20 billion IoT devices out there today, but he predicts that number will grow to 1.5 trillion by 2020. Driving that growth will be what he calls the "explosion" of the smartphone, whereby the sensors inside it, and dozens more in dedicated IoT devices, explode like shrapnel that becomes embedded into wearable devices around the body.

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