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Samsung set to display AI prowess with Galaxy S24 launch

Admire Moyo
By Admire Moyo, ITWeb's news editor.
Johannesburg, 15 Jan 2024
Jong-Hee Han, CEO and head of Samsung’s device eXperience division.
Jong-Hee Han, CEO and head of Samsung’s device eXperience division.

South Korean electronics giant Samsung is expected to demonstrate the capabilities of artificial intelligence (AI) when it launches its next flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S24 this week.

That’s according to market analyst firm Canalys in a commentary ahead of Samsung’s Galaxy S24 launch event on 17 January.

On Wednesday in San Jose, the Galaxy S24 will certainly be the star of Samsung’s next Unpacked event.

It is expected the South Korean tech giant will pack its next-gen flagship smartphone with some AI enhancements.

Last year, Samsung unveiled its own generative AI (Gen AI) platform called Gauss. The company followed up by teasing Galaxy AI, which it touts as bringing an AI experience to mobile devices.

Said Samsung in November: “Galaxy AI is a comprehensive mobile AI experience, powered by both on-device AI developed at Samsung and cloud-based AI-enabled by our open collaborations with like-minded industry leaders. It will transform your everyday mobile experience with the peace of mind you count on from Galaxy security and privacy.”

However, the firm did not provide much detail about the AI model.

Reports say Samsung’s AI Live Translate Call feature, which will work on voice calls, will be offered on flagship Galaxy S24 phones.

The feature is expected to work in both directions, enabling conversations between a variety of languages with almost no delay.

At the just-ended CES event in Las Vegas, Samsung unveiled its strategy to AI into its devices. During the event, Jong-Hee Han, CEO and head of Samsung’s device eXperience division, emphasised the role of AI in enhancing daily lives while maintaining a nonintrusive approach.

“On Samsung’s Galaxy AI, we don’t expect the Galaxy S24 to have a full suite of ground-breaking Gen AI features and solutions ready to use at this launch. Samsung will instead focus on demonstrating the Galaxy AI's potential to provide a robust AI ecosystem to support the development of AI solutions at a foundational level,” says Sheng Win Chow, analyst at Canalys.

Canalys expects there will be some on-device AI features like Live Transcribe, but most new AI features and solutions will be rolled out in the future using software updates.

The firm notes that Gen AI is integral to Samsung’s long-term product strategy, especially in the premium and flagship segments.

It urges Samsung to seek a new way to compete with Apple and extend its market leadership in the Android ecosystem through product innovation and business models beyond just hardware.

“As Samsung’s mid-range approaches flagship specifications, on-device AI features become crucial in setting apart its flagship Galaxy S series in 2024.

“Demonstrating interesting out-of-the-box AI capabilities in the flagship S24 launch will attract early adopters and showcase innovation leadership,” it adds.

Canalys expects that 5% of smartphones shipped in 2024 will be AI-capable, according to its definition.

It points out that AI-capable smartphones will likely reach 635 million units, 45% of the total smartphone market in 2027.

“In 2024, the smartphone market seeks fresh avenues for growth, with vendors leveraging GenAI integration as a strategic imperative for personalisation and innovating through experiences. In addition to Samsung and Google, Chinese vendors are accelerating their AI strategy with major product and OS launches in H1 2024,” Chow says.

“Samsung must showcase its innovation capability and market leadership through the Galaxy S24 series launch, boasting the essential on-device AI hardware at scale and the appetite to develop AI solutions for global smartphone users.”