28 January 2020
Samsung released Bixby digital assistant about a couple of years ago. It was supposed to take on other digital assistants and help boost the Samsung ecosystem but as we know, it has not really made an impact. But Samsung has not given up on Bixby yet and is now reported to be set to end Bixby Voice support on Android Nougat and Oreo devices from January 1st, 2020.
The report is coming from SamMobile citing its sources who are familiar with the development. The affected devices are said to include Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8 Plus, Galaxy S8 Active, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9 Plus, Galaxy Note 8, and Galaxy A9 (2018). If you are someone who owns a Galaxy Note 9 running Android 8.1 Oreo, the move will not have any effect on your Bixby usage.
The change is not expected to affect a huge number of users and most of them have updated to at least Android Pie. It seems like the move is aimed at encouraging users to update to newer software versions and upgrade to Bixby 2.0. The improved version of the Samsung digital assistant was released last year alongside the Galaxy Note 9.
For the uninitiated ones, Bixby Voice is one of the forms of Bixby and is responsible for all the voice-related interactions. It allows users to make use of voice commands to get things done. So if you own any of the aforementioned devices and want to continue using voice commands, it is advised to update your device to the latest available software version.