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Samsung's Family Hub fridge now comes with Alexa built-in

Alexa, how's Bixby taking this?

Ry Crist Senior Editor / Reviews - Labs
Originally hailing from Troy, Ohio, Ry Crist is a writer, a text-based adventure connoisseur, a lover of terrible movies and an enthusiastic yet mediocre cook. A CNET editor since 2013, Ry's beats include smart home tech, lighting, appliances, broadband and home networking.
Expertise Smart home technology and wireless connectivity Credentials
  • 10 years product testing experience with the CNET Home team
Ry Crist
2 min read

Earlier this year, Samsung refreshed the 22.5-inch touchscreen on its flagship Family Hub smart refrigerator, giving it a cleaner interface and new features for cooking and shopping. Now, the company is adding Alexa into the newest Family Hub models, as well -- and that might make for a crowded house, given that the smart fridge already plays home to Samsung's own voice assistant, Bixby.

"Family Hub with Alexa Built-in allows you to access hundreds of thousands of Alexa skills, listen to your morning brief, set timers or alarms, stream Amazon Music, and shop via voice -- all from your fridge," reads Samsung's press release. "You can choose whether to interact with Alexa or Samsung's voice assistant, Bixby, or even use them simultaneously."

Alexa and Bixby as refrigerated roommates is an interesting pitch for the sixth-gen Family Hub, especially given the upcoming arrival of Matter, a new universal smart home standard supported by Samsung, Amazon and others. Matter promises to make the two assistants more or less equal in their ability to interact with and control third-party devices, so if you plan on using your voice-enabled fridge to control your smart home, the specific assistant you're talking to might not make much difference.

In addition to Alexa, users who upgrade their software will find new features first pitched at CES 2021, including the guided recipe assistance of SmartThings Cooking. Users can also now use the Family Hub to order poultry and other meats direct from Perdue Farms, the latest on a growing list of Family Hub grocery delivery partners.

To access Alexa and the rest of Samsung's Family Hub software updates, all of which are available now, you'll need a second-gen Family Hub or newer. That leaves out owners of the original, first-gen Family Hub from 2016 -- in that case, it's Bixby or bust.

Read moreAmazon outlines plans for Matter, custom Alexa commands at Alexa Live developers conference