​SK Telecom adds step-by-step cooking guide feature to AI voice assistant 'NUGU'

By Park Sae-jin Posted : July 3, 2019, 11:14 Updated : July 3, 2019, 11:14

[Courtesy of SK Telecom]

SEOUL -- SK Telecom, South Korea's top mobile carrier, has added a step-by-step cooking assistant feature to its artificial intelligence voice assistant platform "NUGU" to help users who look for something unique to cook or those who are not very confident in cooking.

SK Telecom (SKT) said in a statement on Wednesday that it added a recipe service feature to NUGU. Users can ask NUGU speakers for recipes such as "Samgyetang", the Korean chicken ginseng soup, by voice and the speaker would provide step-by-step cooking instructions using synthetic voice.

"We are very happy to be able to provide easy and convenient recipes to customers who find difficult to cook or interested in cooking," SKT's AI service platform head Lee Hyun-ah said. "We will actively expand practical services that customers need in the future."

A total of some 2,200 recipes will be provided through the AI food recipe service in partnership with 2bob, a South Korean cooking magazine, SKT said.

AI assistant speakers were first introduced by SKT in 2016. The market has grown rapidly with more than three million speakers installed at homes at the end of 2018. There is one AI speaker in every seven homes, according to Nasmedia, a mobile marketing agency.

Tech companies have released smart speakers with built-in displays since 2018, playing like a smart home hub to control other appliances such as smart refrigerators and TVs connected to a home network, while displays were used for entertainment such as playing video via YouTube.

SKT said NUGU speaker models with displays will provide step-by-step cooking voice instruction as well as images to help users better understand cooking procedures. The speakers will also play classical music between instructions.
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