The Bixby AI assistant will be able to use the Galaxy S8 camera for visual search and optical character recognition (OCR), latest rumors suggest. Sources close to Samsung say that the default Camera app of the Galaxy S8 will feature a Bixby button which will serve as a shortcut for allowing the assistant to see its surroundings through the camera lens. The digital assistant will allegedly be able to recognize both objects and text in most images and utilize the data it acquires in a number of different ways.
The mechanics of this functionality sound similar to the Goggles app, but Bixby is said to offer a deeper level of integration with other services. The virtual assistant will reportedly not only be able to identify something like a magazine, but also point you to a store where you can purchase a digital version of it and even make the purchase on its own. This feature is allegedly still in an experimental state of development, meaning it can both change and be dropped until Samsung unveils the Galaxy S8. While the company will likely introduce Bixby alongside the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus, its AI assistant is also expected to roll out on future flagship Galaxy devices. There's currently no information on whether Samsung is planning to bring Bixby to its older Android phones like the Galaxy S7 and the Galaxy S7 Edge.
Regardless of whether this report is accurate, Samsung will likely advertise Bixby as a major selling point of the Galaxy S8. The company's upcoming flagship is expected to be a significant upgrade over the Galaxy S7 as Samsung is looking to make amends for the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco. Recent reports suggest that the Seoul-based phone maker pushed back the release of the Galaxy S8 after discontinuing its 2016 phablet because it wanted to make sure that its next flagship is both perfectly safe and significantly better than its predecessors. More information is bound to follow soon as Samsung will likely unveil the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus at either MWC in late February or a special New York City event in mid-April.