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Samsung opens another AI centre in Montreal

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. announced that it is establishing another artificial intelligence (AI) centre in Montreal, the second biggest city in Canada and home to one of the world’s fastest growing AI communities. 

Today’s announcement compliments earlier news of multiple AI centres launched in North America and continues Samsung’s efforts in AI that include the development of Samsung’s virtual assistant, Bixby. The centre is the fourth Samsung AI Centre to be established in North America following the centres launched in Silicon Valley, New York and Toronto.

The opening of the AI centre in Montreal will allow Samsung to expand its outpost for industry collaboration and talent recruitment in a major AI hub in Canada, dedicated to research and development of core AI technologies that entail machine learning, language, vision and other multi-modal interactions.

At the opening event, there were about 100 guests in attendance including Marc Garneau, Canada’s Minister of Transportation; Philippe Tomlinson, mayor of Outremont and member of Montreal’s Development Commission; Seunghwan Cho, Executive Vice President of Samsung Research; Geunbae Lee, Head of Samsung AI Centre in Seoul and Larry Heck, Head of AI Centres for Samsung Research America.

“By leveraging the power of AI in Samsung’s products and services, we must focus on creating new values, never seen nor experienced before,” said Seunghwan Cho. “To do this, seven Global AI Centres, including the Montreal AI Centre, will play a pivotal role.”

During the event, Samsung presented its future vision for AI as it aims to develop a highly personalized multi-device platform that empowers people to accomplish more in their lives. By providing multiple touchpoints where a user can interact with AI, not only through voice, Samsung’s multi-modal interaction platform (voice, vision, screen, touch) will make experiences more relevant and personal in the future.

“One key element that will move AI to being more widely adopted is multi-device systems—i.e., a variety of AI-enabled devices that communicate seamlessly with each other,” said Dr. Heck. “Samsung is uniquely positioned to be a leader in this regard. It’s not just how each device uses AI, it’s how they use it together.”

Key contributing factors for the location include the availability of key AI talent, including leading AI researchers at McGill University and the University of Montreal who have had longstanding relationships with Samsung. Greater Montreal has emerged as a powerhouse in AI research, housing 250 researchers and 9000 university students in related programs. Establishing an AI Centre in Greater Montreal also enables Samsung to better collaborate with regional start-ups and expand the current ecosystem.

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