One of the more common rumors running alongside the reports focused on the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S8 is the inclusion of a new digital personal assistant called Bixby. Samsung today decided to go ahead and announce its next personal assistant ahead of the GS8′s debut.
The assistant is indeed called Bixby and it will see the light of day with the Galaxy S8 later this year. Bixby is another voice-based personal assistant, but Samsung is taking that idea to the next level. Bixby’s main draw will be the fact that, starting with Samsung’s proprietary apps, everything can be accessed and interacted with by voice.
Samsung says it developed Bixby to work with how people talk, not necessarily forcing the user to conform to preset audible cues (like “Hey, Bixby” or some alternative). Moreover, an app that is Bixby-enabled, which will be “a subset” of Samsung’s apps on the Galaxy S8 to start, is completely accessible by voice. For example, you can prompt Bixby to not only remind you to do something, but you can request Bixby to remind you to do something through a specific app, at a specific time, and then even immediately share that reminder with someone else, all without actually touching the phone.
Samsung also says that Bixby will be contextual and that it will automatically switch between voice mode and text mode, keeping up with the user’s requests so that they don’t have to start over. Samsung is also touting “cognitive tolerance” as one of Bixby’s selling points, which means the digital personal assistant can “understand commands with incomplete information and execute the commanded task to the best of its knowledge.”
To start, Bixby will only work with some of Samsung’s first-party apps, but the company does plan on launching an SDK later this year which will let developers make their apps Bixby-ready.
Galaxy S8 owners will be able to press the Bixby button on the side of their phone and say what they want to get done, so they don’t have to wake up the phone first to access the feature. Samsung says Bixby will be arriving on future Samsung devices, like tablets and PCs, and even some of its appliances.
What do you think of Bixby’s possibilities?