Samsung displays will have Apple, Google, Alexa
This week at CES 2019 Samsung delivered a parcel of announcements that come down to one thing; they will play with anyone and everyone.
First, the one that really shook things up in Las Vegas. This year’s Samsung displays will have iTunes natively. Your Apple iTunes content will be accessible through an iTunes app inside the Samsung TV. Up until this point the only way to access your iTunes content has been through an AppleTV or stream it from a computer with iTunes. This means that Apple is starting to work with other manufacturers to get their content delivered to the Smart TV segment.
In addition to playing iTunes content, the new Samsung displays will support AirPlay2 that gives customers the ability to stream from Apple products videos, pictures, and presentations from Keynote and PowerPoint. Having this feature would eliminate the need for another network appliance that did the same.
The other side of the announcements was voice control. Starting in 2019, Samsung displays will have the ability to be controlled by Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa. This is not a built-in feature like the iTunes app but it means that Samsung displays will have the capability of being controlled by Google or Amazon.
The commands available to both Google Home and the Echo are simple enough. Residential AV dealers will be able to adjust volume, power on and power off, switch inputs, and initiate certain applications.
This is significant in that it is another instance where both Google and Alexa have been given access for controls to devices that have, up until this point, only been controlled through either the manufacturer’s remotes or a third-party control system such as Control4 or Crestron.
It also gives those control companies another avenue to initiate commands to devices, televisions, that have traditionally been controlled through IR or serial command. Both Crestron and Control4 were among the first control companies who touted their ability to work with voice control; first with Amazon Echo and then with Google Home. With the addition of the Samsung television line and the voice control through either protocol, audiovisual integrators have another tool to create integrated experiences.