Samsung’s Bixby, an artificially intelligent assistant, will not be ready in time for the company’s U.S. launch of the Galaxy S8 smartphone.
The delay is particularly embarrassing for Samsung as it had widely advertised the feature, which aims to emulate other voice-activated virtual assistants such as Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa, CNN reports. The Wall Street Journal reported that its performance in English hadn’t matched its performance in Korean during extensive internal tests.
A few Bixby features will be included in the S8 launch, which is scheduled in the U.S. for April 21 but customers won’t be able to use the trailed voice activation technology. Samsung said in a statement that the feature was likely to be released “later this spring”.
The smartphone giant has been building up its AI expertise and acquired technology start-up Viv Labs in 2016. Samsung has not given a reason for Bixby’s delay.
The company had already delayed the launch of the S8 as an apparent precaution against a repeat of the disaster it had with the Galaxy Note 7 smartphone last year. The company had been forced into a wholesale recall of the product which suffered from a design flaw that caused its batteries to catch fire.