When we talk of smartphones, we discuss the design, the hardware, the user interface and performance. But integrated services are often neglected. Last year, Samsung introduced ‘My Galaxy’ app along with the Tizen OS-based smartphone, Samsung Z3. Now, the app has made its way to other Samsung smartphones as well. Some people may consider it as bloatware, some may never give it a try and call it useless, but the app does deserve some attention. I recently had a chance to try out ‘My Galaxy’ app on the Samsung Galaxy S8, and here’s everything you need to know about it.
To put in simple words, My Galaxy app is your hub to entertainment, care and services. It gives you access to videos, music and gaming, along with other services such as hailing an Ola can, booking a movie, recharge your mobile, data card or DTH. My Galaxy app can also help you order food with Zomato integration, book hotels and flight tickets powered by Goibibo, and get some interesting deals across products. In short, the My Galaxy app aims to do away with the need of having to install multiple apps, thus reducing memory constrains on your smartphone. The app also comes with ICICI Pockets wallet integration to make things easier for you. ALSO READ: How to use Samsung Pay in India: Here’s our complete guide on how it works, how to setup and transact
Samsung My Galaxy app account and interface
To begin with, you will have to sign up using your phone number and email ID. Your Pockets wallet ID will also be created, and you can start using it by transferring funds, either via net banking or via debit card. Once this is created and money is loaded, you’re all set to go.
Talking about the interface, the top right has a shortcut for app notifications and settings, which includes your profile, wallet, transactions, saved deals and more. Below the top bar, you have a scrolling banners with some of the best deals around. In my case, it offered me deals like 20 percent cash back on Domino’s Pizza, one free movie ticket at PVR cinemas and more. Do note, that the deals keep changing and may differ from city to city. ALSO READ: Samsung Pay: A payment service with immense opportunity, but challenges exist
Next up, you have the entertainment section with three options – videos, music and gaming. Videos section is powered by VIU, giving you an access to original shows, movies from Bollywood, Tollywood, and much more. As an introductory offer, Samsung is offering free trial for 90 days with unlimited access, after which, you will have to pay Rs 99 per month to continue with the subscription. Next up is music section, powered by Wynk Music, giving you an access to a wide range of songs in different genres and regional languages. By default, you get one-month free subscription, after which you will have to pay Rs 99 per month to continue.
Lastly, there is a gaming section where you get an access to Omlet gaming community. It allows you to play games installed in your phone, while challenging others playing the same game from across the globe. You can even live stream your gaming session on Omlet community, Facebook, YouTube and Twitch. If you’re not a gamer, you can be a spectator and watch streaming from other users. ALSO READ: Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Apple iPhone 7: Low-light camera performance compared
Samsung My Galaxy services
Talking about services, the My Galaxy app aims to make things easier for you. There are seven icons, one each for a service. The first one powered by Ixigo, lets you book Ola cabs without having to install the app. You will have to sign in with your Ola account though.
Upon tapping the Cabs icon, it will determine your current location. Next, you’ll have to add your drop location, followed by choosing the kind of cab you want – mini, micro, SUV and more. Once done, simply click on book, followed by confirm. Sure, it does away with the need of having to install Ola app, but things like choosing payment option – Ola money, cash or UPI – are not available. But, it does let you book a cab with ease.
Next is ‘food’ option, which is powered by Zomato. It lets you browse through a wide variety of menu from restaurants and fast food joints close to your location. I did try ordering once during this time, and the experience was flawless. ALSO READ: Samsung Galaxy S8 camera review: A closer look at the front and rear camera on the newest flagship out there
Want to book a movie ticket? My Galaxy app has got you covered with that too. The next shortcut icon for ‘movies’ is powered by BookMyShow, allowing you to book movie tickets in a breeze. All you need to do is, select a movie and theatre, followed by time, number of tickets and choose your seats. Make the payment and you’re done. You can either choose M-Ticket or you can physically collect your tickets from the ticket window at the theatre.
Vacation planning is tough, you have to look for bus / flight tickets, accommodation and more. The travel section in the My Galaxy app aims to ease this. Powered by GoIbibo, you can look for and book a bus, domestic and international flight tickets, book a hotel and more, without having to install any separate app.
Recharging your mobile, DTH, data cards on a timely basis, or paying your postpaid mobile, electricity, landline and gas bills can easily slip out of your mind. The ‘Bill Pay’ service is here to ease that for you. But before you could pay, you will have to first load the amount in your Pockets Wallet.
The other two options, coupons – where you get new deals every week or month and the other is ‘care’ option. Under the care option, you can activate extended warranty after buying it from a Samsung authorized store, locate nearby Samsung experience store or service center, remotely diagnose your phone for optimizing its performance, and more. ALSO READ: Samsung Galaxy S8+ Review: It’s glorious, but with some caveats
Samsung My Galaxy Assistant
Lastly, the My Galaxy app also comes with ‘My Assistant’ feature, which is available at the bottom of the screen. Tapping on my assistant, you get a host of options, starting with ‘live chat with Samsung,’ where you can chat with Samsung customer care representatives. You can ask about your queries related to product, features and more.
Next, there are a bunch of options, powered by Haptic, a chat-based personal assistant that combines machines and humans to help you get done with things in real-time. You can ask the personal assistant show movie reviews, check PNR status for you, do a web check-in, order food, look for best hotels and more. However, when I tried to use the chat based assistant to ask for queries, it didn’t quite work for me. But if done right, there sure is a good potential for this.
Overall, the My Galaxy app is a good attempt from Samsung to bring a lot of day-to-day use services under one roof. However, it does have its own set of flaws, and Samsung needs to address them. Having the right ecosystem of apps and services under My Galaxy app, just some fine tuning, and bug fixing could help it make more usable in future.
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