A statement has been provided by Samsung to Axios today, exclaiming that when the Galaxy S8 goes on sale in the United States, Samsung’s virtual assistant Bixby will not be supported out of the box by the device.
Samsung launched its latest flagship Galaxy S8 on March 31 at its separate launch event, and Samsung’s swing at a virtual assistant “Bixby” was touted as the cornerstone of what made Galaxy S8 better than the previous Galaxy S flagship handsets. At launch, Samsung proclaimed with pride that using Bixby on Galaxy S8, “Anything you could do with touch, you can do with voice”.
Bixby won’t be completely absent from Galaxy S8 at launch, however, as “key features of Bixby, including Vision, Home, and Reminder will be available” when the device launches globally on April 21. As for users in the United States, they would have to wait a little while longer as “Bixby Voice will be available on the Galaxy S8 in the US later this Spring”.
While no official reason or explanation has been provided by Samsung in the aftermath of the statement, it is considered an open secret that Bixby has been experiencing bugs and issues. By delaying the launch in one of its biggest markets worldwide, where reputations are formed and lost, Samsung could be looking to avoid another disaster, albeit a software one rather than a hardware.
Especially for a company like Samsung, after the Note7 debacle, it is of paramount importance that it really puts the nail on the head with Galaxy S8. Bixby remains one of its major features, and failing to deliver on that end could spell significant trouble for the South Korean tech giants. It looks like Samsung is ready to take a step back and would prefer to launch a product that’s ready with a minor delay, rather than shipping an incomplete mess of bugs on April 21.