Think about any of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ reviews that you might have read or seen on the Internet, all of them would have one thing in common – complaint regarding the absence of voice-commands on the company’s new Bixby digital assistant. While Samsung didn’t provide the functionality with the smartphones at their global launch, the company has now started rolling out the support in South Korea.
Samsung activated the support for voice-commands to the digital assistant at 1pm KST on Monday, after sending a notice in the morning to users of the smartphones, as pointed out in a report by ZDNet. While some of the key Bixby features including Vision, Home and Reminder were made available from the launch of the new Galaxy smartphones, the lack of voice-command support was a noteworthy absence when the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8+ were made available last month.
As of now Bixby only supports Korean language but comes with the option of a male or a female voice as per user’s preference. Upon activation, users can access Bixby Voice with a single tap of the Bixby button and two taps will take them to the Hello Bixby home page. There are several options including Voice Feedback, Feedback Style, Bixby voice wake-up, and Read aloud in high quality among others. There is also “Bixby Labs” to allow developers to test the integration of their apps with Bixby.
The apps that currently support Bixby voice-commands include Gallery, Contacts, Phone, Settings, and stock Camera app among others. We will have to wait and see how developers make the most of the voice-assistant’s capabilities and integrate the support for voice-commands within their apps to maximise the utility of the feature. It also remains to be seen when Samsung will introduce voice command support in the US and other regions – the company had promised a Spring release.
To recall, it was revealed shortly after launch that full functionality for Samsung Bixby would arrive by Q4 2017, as well as support for more languages including German.