This latest turn of events confirms the rumor on Bixby's existence that started circulating the industry in late 2016 after Samsung filed to trademark the word "Bixby" and its variations in Europe. Bixby was likely developed by Viv Labs, an AI startup that Samsung acquired in November for an undisclosed sum. Viv Labs was founded by people who originally worked on Apple's intelligent assistant Siri, though their new digital companion is said to be significantly more advanced than its alternatives. Bixby will reportedly support up to eight languages at launch and be deeply integrated into all of Samsung's default apps that will ship with the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus. For example, one recent report indicated that the AI assistant will be able to access the camera of the Galaxy S8 in order to conduct a visual search, identify a product, then purchase that same product online through Samsung Pay Mini, a new online payments solution that Samsung announced last month.
The company's latest financial report suggested that Bixby will be advertised as one of the main selling points of the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus as the Seoul-based consumer electronics manufacturer said it's looking to differentiate its future products with extremely capable and unique software features like its upcoming AI assistant. Furthermore, some of Samsung's recent trademark filings indicated that Bixby may also debut on computers and Internet of Things (IoT) devices in the future, meaning that the tech giant may be looking to create an entire ecosystem around the voice-enabled companion. More information on Bixby is bound to follow soon as the assistant will likely be officially unveiled alongside the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus on March 29.