Bixby may not have the same brand appeal as the other virtual assistants on the market, but Samsung is clearly focused on giving it every chance to reach the big leagues. That means Bixby is getting a hefty update (opens in new tab), complete with a bunch of enhancements and upgrades.
And one of these upgrades will let you create an “AI generated copy” of your voice and tone. That’s not creepy at all.
The upgrades will be coming as part of a software update, which Samsung says will start rolling out by the end of February. According to Samsung, the update’s goal is to “build a more intelligent interface that is proactive and adaptive, giving people greater control over their mobile experience.”
One of the biggest features is something Samsung has already spoken about at length, Bixby Text Call in English. This feature is officially part of OneUI 5.1, and lets you avoid the arduous task of answering the phone yourself. Instead Bixby will do it for you, answering the call and converting what the caller said into a readable text message — while also reading your responses back to whoever is calling.
Bixby Custom Voice Creator: Deepfake your own voice
If that wasn’t enough, Samsung has also announced the new ‘Bixby Custom Voice Creator’. This lets you create and customize the voice Bixby speaks in, by recording sentences and letting the assistant analyze your voice. That way Bixby can speak with an AI-generated version of your real voice.
Bixby’s voice creator tool is currently only available in Korean and on Galaxy S23 devices. However Samsung has plans to ensure it’s compatible with other Samsung apps — not just phone calls.
This feature raises some questions. First, can the person on the other end of the call be fooled into thinking it’s you? Will, the AI announce itself as Bixby even if it’s in your own voice? And most importantly, should Samsung be doing this at all?
Other new Bixby features
Another Korean-only feature on the way includes the option to set a custom wake-up phrase in the Bixby app — but only on an S23 device. Just in case you don’t want to be heard asking Bixby for something for whatever reason.
The update will also turn Bixby from an “intelligent assistant” to an “intelligent platform”, according to Samsung. The idea is that Bixby will be better able to anticipate your needs, and better understand follow-up requests by taking the context of previous interactions into account.
Part of that involves the launch of eight new scenarios, again only available in Korean for the time being. We don’t know the full extent of this feature, only that there will be one scenario involving exercise and music, as well as another that can save schedules to your calendar.
Bixby: You can now do more offlne
Finally this update will add improvements to Bixby’s on-device AI capabilities, allowing it to do more even when your phone is offline — examples of which include taking screenshots and turning on your flashlight.
It’s shocking that this feature has taken so long to arrive, but at least it means Bixby can carry out more simple tasks without connecting to a Samsung server. Thankfully, this is available in English and other languages that are not Korean.