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In this 2020 Samsung Family Hub 3.0 review, we explore seven things we like about Samsung’s highly futuristic smart fridge.
We’ll look at the latest version, including some cool new features and apps.
These include integration with Samsung’s new Bixby digital assistant/smart speaker.
We’ll explore the pros and cons, and we’ll even compare it with the previous generation, the Family Hub 2.0.
So grab an iced latte, and let’s chill.
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One Chill Fridge
If you ever thought “man, if there was only a giant tablet on the front of my fridge that I could use to automate my life,” the Samsung Family Hub may be just the thing for your smart home kitchen.
The Family Hub’s refrigerator’s stainless steel french doors include a high-tech ice dispenser on the left side. On the right door, is a beautiful, massive, 21-inch, full-color LCD touchscreen.
This is what Samsung hopes will be the hub of your smart home.
Put simply, this is one “cool” refrigerator. While there are some shortcomings and a few kinks to be worked out even in the 3rd-generation models, we think is one of the most innovative smart home appliances available today.
7 Reasons We Think Samsung’s Latest Fridge is Oh So Cool
1. Peer inside from anywhere.
Well, you can at the least from anywhere on earth with half-way decent wi-fi capability. Every time the fridge door closes, three interior cameras take a photo of what’s inside. These pics are accessible using your smartphone so you will always know what’s in the fridge and what you are out of. Now, how cool is that? And very helpful prior to making that trip to the supermarket.
2. Food shop from your smart refrigerator door.
Um, we’d better make that IF you go to the supermarket. Those trips may be fewer and further between. Why? The Family Hub provides the capability to buy groceries right from your smart refrigerator door. (The Hub connects to several major food delivery providers, including FreshDirect, InstaCart and Grubhub.) Moreover, you can sync your family’s shopping wish lists to create a jumbo list from which to shop. What??
You’re not still actually going to the supermarket are you?
That’s just SO very early 2000s…
3. Leave notes and reminders for the family.
You can throw out that dusty old kitchen chalkboard. Using the built-in Whiteboard app, you can draw and leave notes for your loved ones right on your smart fridge door. Each family member gets an avatar so you can send them personalized notes, to-do lists, and more. Think: “Honey, don’t forget to pick up Fifi from the pet spa!”
4. Create profiles and sync schedules right from the appliance.
Family Hub gives you the capability to create calendars for each family member and sync them to display everyone’s schedule together in an integrated color-coded calendar view. Neat.
5. Listen to music or watch TV.
All members of your tribe can play their favorite music via Spotify or Pandora. Or they can also listen to live radio apps like iHeartRadio and TuneIn. Additionally, they can even mirror a Samsung Smart TV located in a separate room. That’s right, you can watch SpongeBob on your refrigerator. You can also connect compatible wireless speakers to the Family Hub and stream your favorite music in other rooms. You can also stream a photo gallery, and there are some cool wallpapers to choose from during downtime.
6. Talk to your screen (not the palm).
Integrated voice control with Samsung’s Bixby voice assistant is helpful when your hands are full of groceries—or snacks! The latest edition of the Hub comes in four models: 4-Door Flex™, 4-Door French Door, 4-Door French Door Recessed Handles, and 3-Door French Door. You can check the latest pricing on Samsung Family Hub inventory at Amazon here.
7. Lots of neat Samsung Family Hub apps, especially with the 3.0 models.
The 3.0 runs on Samsung’s Tizen operating system and comes with a ton of apps. These include:
- The ability to control many functions via voice command using Samsung Bixby (similar to Alexa)
- “Bixby Vision,” which identifies when foods that need to be kept fresh are expiring. No more sour milk!
- Meal Planner app that suggests recipes based on the contents in your fridge
- Amazon Dash buttons that work with your Hub account for the one-touch ordering of commonly purchased items
- Games and such, including trivia and a word-of-the-day app
- Shared calendars that work with Outlook and Gmail
- The ability to recognize up to six household members by voice
- A digital circular that displays sale items from nearby grocery stores
- The ability to control other smart devices from the fridge’s touchscreen or through Bixby
Samsung Family Hub 3.0 vs 2.0 Review: Check the Videos
Family Hub 3.0 Video Review
Check out this outstanding review on YouTube from JB TechFanatic. Fresh out of it’s unboxing, JB reviews the Family Hub 3.0 fridge inside and out.
Family Hub 2.0 Video Review
Thanks to Andru Edwards from GearLive.com for this thoughtful YouTube review of the Family Hub 2.0 model.
Main Differences Between Samsung Family Hub 2.0 vs 3.0
The main differences between the older first and second generation and newer third-generation models are:
- The additional and improved apps that we mentioned above
- The 3.0 model [and some of the newer 2.0 models] add voice control for Samsung’s Bixby voice assistant
- 3.0 adds the introduction of additional models and sizes, including three- and four-door models
- The 3.0 adds an introduction of a higher-end model that feature built-in speakers from AKG (see 3.0 video review above)
Some Common Issues
No Samsung Family Hub 3.0 review would be complete without a reporting on some of the negative feedback customers have given on this refrigerator.
The good news is that most of the negative feedback has been around the 2.0 models and Samsung has worked to addressed most customer concerns in the newer 3.0 models.
It doesn’t help that Amazon carries mostly the older generations of this fridge, so the ratings there give the appearance that the fridge has negative reviews overall. This is not the case. Many customers at Best Buy, on Tube, and at other major retailers RAVE about the new generations of this fridge.
However, no generation of this refrigerator is perfect. In the older models, the negative reviews mostly about networking and conflicts with older home networks. Another common complaint was the lack of compatibility with Alexa and other PDAs. Samsung is working to address these with its latest version with its Bixby voice assistant. Initial reviews are mostly favorable.
That said, the most common complaint with the newer 3.0 models is that Bixby can be slow to respond and is a bit buggy.
Another concern raised is the lack of an elegant upgrade path from the earliest generation of the refrigerators to the most current.
Finally, the price tag is a bit too steep for many consumers to make this a viable purchase.
However, we’re sure Samsung will get these bugs ironed out quickly as the competition is really heating up in the smart home appliances arena. The prices have come down this year well.
As this report from Market Reseach Future reveals, the global smart home appliances market is expected to grow at approx. USD 33 Billion by 2023, at 23% of CAGR between 2017 and 2023. Now that is some pretty impressive growth.
On a Related Note
Here are some additional articles you may also enjoy:
Samsung Family Hub 3 vs 2 Review: Your Turn
We hope you enjoyed our 2019 Samsung Family Hub 3.0 vs 2.0 Review.
Are you considering purchasing this cool smart appliance with a giant screen? What are some of the key factors affecting your decision to buy or not to buy? We would love it if you would leave us a comment below and let us know.
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About the Author
Tim Brennan, Technical Writer & Blogger
Tim Brennan [a.k.a. "Tec Timmy"] is a senior technical writer with over 20 years of experience writing for companies and organizations in and around Greater Boston, including GE and MIT. In addition to actively writing for this smart home blog, Tim is also a regular contributor over at UniversalRemoteReviews.com. Tim holds a BA in Journalism from Northeastern University. Brennan is a father to two sons, an active blogger, a Star Wars nut, and loves a good taco🌮. There is a strong chance he is developing a crush on Amazon Alexa. You can learn more about Tim here.