What is Bixby? A Complete Guide to Samsung’s AI Smart Assistant
Launched in March 2017 alongside the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus smartphones, Samsung’s Bixby has been at the heart of the company’s ecosystem ever since.
But what exactly is Bixby? How does it work? And how to enjoy it on your Samsung device?
For answers to this and other questions, read on.
Table of Contents:
- What is Bixby?
- How do I access Bixby?
- Why can I use Bixby?
- What is BixbyVision?
- What devices are compatible with Bixby?
What is Bixby?
Bixby is Samsung’s AI-based personal assistant, loosely in the mold of Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and Google Assistant.
Bixby allows you to do many normal tasks that you would do on your smart device using voice and text input. Although it is available on a wide range of Samsung devices, including its TVs and refrigerators, its main home is in Samsung smartphones, which we will mainly talk about here.
How do I access Bixby?
Some older Samsung phones had a dedicated side key to activate Bixby. All you have to do is press and hold this button and Bixby will start listening to your voice commands.
On newer Samsung phones and others without a side button, you can use your Samsung phone’s power button as an effective Bixby button, though you may have to dive into the Settings menu to set it up.
In each of these button press situations, Bixby responds to a pressed command, like a walkie-talkie, or with a double tap.
It’s also possible to access Bixby through the dedicated Bixby app, and you can also enable Bixby to wake up when you hear you say the “Hello Bixby” voice prompt.
In addition to voice input, you’ll notice a keyboard icon when you open Bixby. Tap on it and you can type your commands into Bixby, which is great for situations where stealth is required.
Why can I use Bixby?
Just ask Bixby to do something you’d normally do on your phone, using natural language, and it should be able to do it.
For example, you can ask Bixby to “send a text message to…” a contact and then dictate the message or read a recently received message. You can also ask Bixby to “take a selfie,” and it will do so without you having to press anything on your phone.
A common task that Bixby can do just like these other personal assistant apps is asking you to remind you to do something at a certain date and time. It will then add it to your calendar.
Ask Bixby what your schedule is and it will read your calendar entries for the day. Ask him what the weather will be tomorrow and he will show you and tell you the forecast.
Bixby works especially well in a home that has other Samsung devices, such as a Samsung TV or SmartThings smart devices.
Our recommendation would be to open the Bixby app as it will offer a lot of recommendations on what you can use for Bixby.
Even outside of Samsung apps, Bixby will work with popular apps. Simply ask Bixby to play something on Netflix or Spotify, and assuming you have them installed and configured on your phone, it’ll open the appropriate app and do just that.
Similarly, ask Bixby to send a message on WhatsApp and it will know exactly what you are asking for.
What is BixbyVision?
Bixby Vision is a separate app that allows Bixby to use its image recognition intelligence to make searching and shopping easier.
Point the Bixby Vision viewer at an object and it will provide links to similar images, identify landmarks, translate foreign text, and even scan wine labels.
What devices are compatible with Bixby?
Generally speaking, any Samsung smartphone or tablet released in 2017 or later should have Bixby built in from the start.
However, support has also been added for some older Samsung devices that were still being actively updated from 2017.
In terms of devices that ship (or have shipped) with Bixby, they include:
- From the Samsung Galaxy S8 series, including the new Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
- From the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold series, including the Galaxy Z Fold 3
- Samsung Galaxy Note 9 series and later
- Samsung Galaxy Watch and later
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.0 (2017) and later
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 and later, including the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra
Bixby is also installed on many Samsung smart devices, including TVs and refrigerators.
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