Samsung is one of the world’s most popular smart home appliance makers. Its Family Hub allows multiple smart home devices to be interconnected, making it easier to control them. Recently, the South Korean company released a new update for the platform, which enables its smart refrigerators to turn into a TV. Particularly, we are talking about a new feature dubbed Samsung TV Plus, a free, ad-supported live TV service, which makes the fridges with a built-in tablet become a TV.
Samsung TV Plus
At its second annual Bespoke Home event, Samsung announced that the update will begin rolling out this July. However, only the Family Hub 2.0 models (2017 and later) will get it. And as for the mentioned feature, it will be supported only in the U.S. and Korea.
At the moment, the Samsung smart fridge users can watch TV on them only via mirroring a Samsung TV to the fridge touchscreen. Moreover, you have to own both – the Samsung fridge and the Samsung smartphone. Without one of those devices, your fridge will remain a traditional fridge.
For many users, however, watching TV on a Samsung fridge is boring. The reason is that the fridge won’t use the entire 21.5-inch touchscreen for this goal, but only a small horizontal area in the middle. In this regard, many users think that the Google Nest Hub Max or Echo Show 10 are better options. Anyway, the Samsung fridge can be also used as a smart speaker, which supports Amazon’s Alexa and Samsung’s Bixby voice assistants.
Apart from the Samsung TV Plus service, the Samsung fridge products will also get another feature from the Samsung TVs. All those fridges that support Family Hub will get access to an app called Art Gallery. As the name implies, the Samsung fridge will turn into a piece of art. Due to the bezel-less design, the touchscreen will turn into a painting or another piece of art blending into the fridge door.
This is something similar to The Frame, Samsung’s popular TV that turns into a painting when not in use. Like this one, Art mode will make the touchscreen of the Samsung fridge a bright, attention-grabbing screen when not in use. The Art Gallery service is free and won’t require a subscription, at least, at launch.
Smart Samsung Fridge Features
The company also upgraded the internal camera technology, which is able to scan food labels and identify their expiration dates. When you put drinks and food in, the cameras can also scan them and make suggestions such as recipes based on the ingredients it sees. The technology will be updated to better recognize food.
The Samsung fridge is the biggest smart home appliance in the company’s Family Hub. So they can serve as a home control center for SmartThings, Samsung’s smart home platform.
We are still waiting for Matter to become the default controller on Samsung (and not only) smart appliances. But it seems this update won’t include it.
[Matter, the new smart home connectivity standard jointly developed by Samsung, Apple, Google, Amazon, and others. It’s coming this fall.]
By the way, the SmartThings Home Life suite will be launched in 97 countries later this month. As for now, it’s only available in the U.S. and Korea.
[Home Life is part of the SmartThings app. It provides centralized and integrated control over your Samsung appliances. Through it, you can connect the smart home appliances together using six SmartThings services: SmartThings Cooking, Energy, Clothing Care, Pet Care, Air Care, and Home Care.]