Samsung’s Bixby digital assistant launched alongside the company’s latest Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones without its voice control component, as the company encountered various language issues due to lack of data and foreign language experts. The assistant’s voice capabilities finally made it into the smartphones of users in the US last month.
Samsung has announced today that Bixby is now available in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. However, the digital assistant still recognizes only English and Korean, with additional languages and features being planned for the future.
Injong Rhee, Executive Vice President and Head of R&D at Samsung’s Software and Services of the Mobile Communications Business division, said in the press release:
“Now millions of customers worldwide have access to a new and intelligent way of interacting with their phone. The expansion of Bixby’s voice capabilities is an initial step in the continued rollout of Bixby functionality. In the future, Bixby will have the learning power to offer more intelligent and personalized interactions and seamless connections across more devices.”
In addition, Samsung hopes it can convince third-party developers to make their apps Bixby-enabled so that users can access more of their features via voice control. Galaxy S8 and S8+ users can access the digital assistant by pressing the dedicated Bixby button on those phones, or by saying “Hi, Bixby.” The rollout comes during an important week for Samsung, with the Galaxy Note8 set to be officially unveiled tomorrow.