Samsung logo at store in Shanghai. A South Korean multinational conglomerate.
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Samsung is expected to unveil its futuristic “artificial human” project at the Consumer Electronics Show on Monday.
Social media accounts for Samsung’s Neon have teased the mysterious technology ahead of a keynote by Samsung consumer electronics division CEO Hyun-Suk Kim. Over the weekend, a Reddit user claimed to have found unlisted videos of the project in the website’s source code, and on Sunday, Neon project lead Pranav Mistry further stoked speculation when he tweeted that he was prepared to demo Samsung’s Core R3 technology at CES.
The leaked videos have since been deleted, but offered a glimpse into the lifelike avatars Neon may be creating. The promo videos showed a group of people who appear to be human, though it’s unclear to what extent they might be computer-generated.
Mistry tweeted Sunday that the Core R3 technology “can now autonomously create new expressions, new movements, new dialog (even in Hindi), completely different from the original captured data.” He included a side-by-side photo of a woman, overlaid with code and other graphics.
In a recent interview with an Indian business news publication, Mistry shared his vision of how “artificial humans” could fit into the world.
“While films may disrupt our sense of reality, ‘virtual humans’ or ‘digital humans’ will be reality,” Mistry said. “A digital human could extend its role to become a part of our everyday lives: a virtual news anchor, virtual receptionist, or even an AI-generated film star.”
While it’s still unclear what exactly Neon will be, the company made clear what it is not. In a tweet last month, Neon wrote that it is not to be conflated with Bixby, Samsung’s virtual assistant.
“NEON is NOT about Bixby, or anything you have seen before,” the account posted.
Samsung did not immediately respond to a request for comment.