Voice assistants? Something very close to virtual life managers.
They’re helping us to complete multiple complex tasks, from turning the lights on to playing our favourite song. Next thing you know, they will select your soulmate on Tinder.
Samsung, the world’s largest mobile phone manufacturer, wanted to create its very own voice for Bixby, Samsung’s personal voice assistant.
An intelligent interface that creates a simpler, easier way to interact with Samsung devices, Bixby is designed to assist users in their day-to-day life.
But how do you create such a voice? With the scale and experience for the level of casting, testing and direction needed for such an extensive job, our voice-casting department enlisted to find the voice of Bixby and help the brand to be heard and understood in a very noisy world.
First up was answering the question: “Who is Bixby?”
Several months of development (read: 50,000 spoken scripts and castings) eventually helped Samsung define Bixby’s persona, tone of voice, emotion and pronunciation.
Next task? Finding the right voice talent to personify our ‘digital friend’. After researching at NYU, the Massive team whittled the cast of 300 down to a shortlist of 24, took 25 completed test sessions before settling upon THE one.
Roscoe Williamson, Creative Strategy and Innovation Director at MassiveMusic, comments: “This was a real collaboration between MassiveMusic and MassiveVoices across the world. Combining our sound branding and project management experience with MassiveVoices’ scale and experience provided a strong team offering.”
The result demonstrates how the unique collaboration of specialist voice development and sonic branding can result in an innovative, human and intelligent agent which is both purposeful and matches Samsung’s brand identity.
Bixby can combine conversational language and integration with third-party services to perform tasks, respond to queries and dictate messages on demand. It now supports over 10 million people worldwide on a daily basis.
“What an experience this project was,” comments Claudia Hesse, Head of Voice at MassiveVoices. “Having worked in voice casting for over 20 years, I thought I’d seen it all but teaming up with Samsung, the specialists from MassiveMusic and their partners worldwide to find the voice for Bixby was an exceptional experience.”
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Global Creative Strategy Directorroscoe@massivemusic.com