The highly anticipated Bixby, an intelligent digital assistant set to take Samsung users by storm, has now arrived. Let's take a look at some of its best features and see how well Bixby fairs against the likes of Siri and Alexa.
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What can Bixby do?
Essentially a voice-activated digital assistant, Bixby has been designed to make interaction with Samsung phones easier than ever. Intending to eventually make every task possible via voice activation, Bixby users should be able to carry out any command without touching their device once all apps have been developed to become Bixby compatible.
For the time being, Samsung have focused on integrating Bixby with their core apps, and plan to roll out additional features in the near future. Here's a look at some of the coolest things Bixby users can currently do:
• Bixby Voice: Control the screen's brightness, switch off Wi-Fi and search for photos taken on a particular date using your voice. For now, Bixby Voice mainly works with core Samsung apps but this feature is set to expand massively as time goes on, particularly when third-party apps are able to incorporate Bixby features.
• Bixby Home: Existing on the home screen, Bixby Home offers a series of widgets that can be customised depending on personal preferences. View the weather for the week, find upcoming appointments, see how many steps you've walked in a day and do so much more with Bixby Home. There's a small eye icon at the top too, which lets you launch Bixby Vision.
• Bixby Vision: Translate a foreign language on a sign instantly, shop on sight and let Bixby be your personal tour guide using Bixby Vision. Simply launch the camera, select the Vision icon and focus on the object you wish to learn more about to enjoy this intelligent feature.
• Bixby Reminder: Set intelligent reminders quickly using Bixby. Need to water the plants when you arrive home? Bixby can recognise when you walk through your door and it'll activate a notification that will feature on the always- on display, edge screen and on Bixby Home so you never forget what needs to be done.
When will you see Bixby in action?
Samsung fans can enjoy Bixby immediately if they purchase one of Samsung's new flagship smartphones - the Galaxy S8 or S8+ alonside the stunning Infinity Display and Iris Scanning technology. Currently, Bixby isn't available on any other Samsung device, but it's believed that Bixby may be introduced to older models at a later date.
If this is the case, an update will be required for users to enjoy Bixby. All future Samsung devices will most likely feature Bixby too.
To activate Bixby on your Galaxy S8 or S8+, you simply have to press the designated button on the left-hand side of the device or utter a 'wake word' to bring Bixby to life.
How is Bixby different?
Samsung keep uttering the AI buzzword 'contextually aware' when discussing Bixby. Similar to results demonstrated by Alexa, Bixby has been designed to understand full sentences rather than specific commands, interpreting what has been said to carry out the user's desired action. Bixby can function using a mixture of voice commands and touch too, and uses logic to predict the next action required rather than waiting for step-by-step commands.
Bixby is also said to become more intelligent as time goes on, learning the user's habits, routine and preferences to offer a more complete solution. The more you use Bixby, the better the results you will receive.