Samsung can’t come through on its Bixby deadline

The Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus are undoubtedly the hottest phones on the market right now. Advertising for the phones is everywhere and sales numbers are through the roof. One of the most well-publicized features on the flagships is Samsung’s newest personal assistant, Bixby.

Bixby is supposed to be the killer feature for the Galaxy S lineup that differentiates it from the likes of the Pixel, LG G6, and HTC U 11. Talk to your phone like a person and have it respond in kind. Replace tapping your screen with simple voice commands. Along with the voice integration, Bixby also hooks into your camera application to give you useful links to purchase what you’re seeing in your viewfinder and a Google Now-like window to the left of your homepage on your launcher that shows you news stories, calendar entries, and more.

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But, the Galaxies launched in the US without the voice integration to Bixby to the dismay of customers. Samsung talked up the feature so much at the Unpacked launch event, how it could be missing? Samsung told us that it wasn’t ready quite yet, but we’d see it in the Spring.

Unfortunately, it looks like that’s not going to happen.

A report today in the Wall Street Journal states that the Bixby voice integration is still weeks away, late June at the earliest, but more than likely Summer.  A quick glance at the calendar shows us that Spring ends on June 21, three short weeks away and that’s not promising for Samsung. The issue stems from Bixby being unreliable in recognizing English, which is obviously a problem.

Samsung does not have a good reputation when it comes to software. It’s software skins are routinely panned for being bloated, ugly, and slow while software updates come few and far between for older devices and anything but flagship-level phones. We hope that Samsung is holding off on Bixby until it’s perfect because a late launch of an imperfect feature is even more of a disaster.

Samsung would be wise to remember to under promise and over deliver.

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