Samsung Announces 'Bixby 2.0' Designed for Smart Home Products Like Refrigerators and TVs
According to Samsung, Bixby 2.0 is a "fundamental leap forward for digital assistants" and a "bold reinvention of the platform," designed with the aim of making Bixby available on "any and all devices."
Bixby 2.0 will be available on smartphones, TVs, refrigerators, home speakers, and other connected technology products. Bixby 2.0 will be "open," allowing developers to choose how users interact with Bixby in their services.
Samsung says Bixby 2.0 features enhanced natural language capabilities to support more natural commands and complex processing, so it can "really get to know and understand" who you are and who members of your family are.
Bixby, a Siri competitor, was designed to be deeply integrated within apps, differentiating it from other AI-based assistants like Siri and Cortana. Samsung ran into trouble with Bixby early on, though, and was not able to include the assistant in the English versions of the Galaxy S8 and S8+ due to performance issues.
While Bixby performed well in Korean, its English voice recognition capabilities lagged behind, and so Bixby was not added to the Galaxy S8 and S8+ models in the United States until July, three months after the devices launched.
Galaxy S8 owners have complained that Bixby can be confusing and frustrating to use, and a lack of enthusiasm for the feature has even caused Samsung to implement a feature that allows the dedicated Bixby button on the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8 to be disabled.
Bixby was built using technology Samsung acquired from Viv, an AI assistant that was developed by some of the creators originally responsible for Apple's Siri.
Samsung is launching a private beta program with the Bixby SDK, available for select developers.