Leading up to CES 2020, Samsung teased Neon, an artificial human. Details were sparse, and Samsung said little other than to confirm Neon was an all new endeavor and had nothing to do with their existing AI engine, Bixby.
At CES 2020, Samsung finally showed what Neon is: a virtual, “artificial human” avatar, according to TechRepublic. Unlike an AI assistant, Neon is not designed to be a source of information, or have the answers to every question put to it. It’s designed to be a personal companion, one that learns and evolves just as a human being would.
Pranav Mistry, CEO of Neon and head of Samsung’s STAR Labs set out to see if technology and AI could become more human-like. The end result is an AI that “can have conversations and behave like humans, and they will form memories and develop new skills. However, each one is unique, with its own personality that can develop over time.”
In many ways, the technology sounds similar to S1m0ne, the movie starring Al Pacino about a movie producer who creates a virtual actress. Beyond the science fiction novelty, however, Neon has the potential to be used in a wide range of practical applications, such as interpersonal training or companionship.
In the meantime, Neon is still several years away from public availability. Until then, we’ll just have to keep talking to Siri and Alexa.