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by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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Samsung acquires former Siri team members’ startup

Our pal Matthew Panzarino reporting at TechCrunch:

Ubiquity, Kittlaus said in an interview, is the reason Viv is trundling into Samsung’s bosom. Specifically, when I asked him why Samsung, he said this:

“They ship 500 million devices a year. You asked me onstage about what our real goal is, and I said ubiquity.

If you take a look around what’s going on in the market these days, and our readiness to really expand on our distribution, it made perfect sense when we discovered that our visions are so completely aligned, and our assets using the core technology in this huge distribution, the opportunity that now is the right time, and Samsung’s the right partner.”

Despite success that is built on the shoulders of Android, Samsung is working pretty hard to divorce itself from Google. Having its own non-Google virtual assistant is a major stepping stone in that direction.

Viv had its first public demo earlier this year, and the system, which is built from the ground-up to be extensible and work with many different services, is certainly promising. However, we’ve yet to see it how it holds up in the real world.