Bixby, Samsung’s digital voice assistant, will stop working on Galaxy devices running Android Oreo or Nougat. The Korean company has announced that Galaxy devices still on older versions of the operating system as of January 1, 2020 will stop hearing from Bixby. The assistant will cease to work on these devices. Bixby will stop working on devices still running Android 8 Oreo and Android 7 Nougat. This should affect only a small percent of users. In reality, it won’t be seen as a big loss by Samsung Galaxy smartphone users.
According to Sammobile, the devices that will be affected by this move include Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+ and Galaxy S8 Active. The Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 8 and Galaxy A9 2018 will also reportedly lose access to Bixby assistant. If you have any of these devices and wish to continue to access Bixby then you will need to update your devices to Android 9 Pie or Android 10 first. All the models mentioned here can already be updated to One UI based on Android Pie.
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The report states that Samsung decided to block the assistant on older versions of Android as a way to drive software updates. Samsung believes that its users will update to newer versions of Android to continue to use Bixby assistant. This should also result in an increase in user base of Bixby 2.0. To recall, the Korean company launched Bixby as an alternative to Google Assistant alongside the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ in 2017. Since then, it has been expanded to other devices as well.
While Bixby had multiple issues at the time of launch and limited language support, Samsung has continued to make it better. It reintroduced the assistant in the form of Bixby 2.0 with Galaxy Note 9 last year. The update brings better response and adds a number of new features as well. While Samsung is trying to convince its customers to update to new version of Android, most users will be sticking with Google Assistant.