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With Bixby Delays So Soon After the Note 7 Fiasco, Samsung is Playing with Fire

by Cliff Raskind | Apr 12, 2017

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Analysts in our Wireless Smartphone Strategies service all agree that the S8 and S8+ are make or break products for Samsung to successfully rebound from battery-gate.
  

I don’t believe that the S8 ushers in an entirely new era of smartphones, but it is a very powerful device that offers a lot of industry firsts. I’m dazzled by the 10-nanometer processor’s performance as well as the Infinity Display and Iris Detection API’s.  I could even use an S8 as a reasonable PC replacement should the airline laptop-ban expand. And yes Samsung went to significant lengths to let us all know we can have a conversation with our S8 via Bixby.   

So everything offered on the device has to be perfect when the S8 and S8+ are rolled out. Samsung is likely ensuring this by not launching Bixby in full along with the S8 global roll-out. Samsung may be playing with fire with a Bixby delay coming so soon after the Note 7 fiasco (literally and metaphorically).  Yet history tells us that a full Bixby launch date slip would in the final analysis be more palatable than a sub-par experience at launch. The reality is that Bixby must work as well in every language it is offered in, as it does in Korean.  

Bottom line: After all the hype Bixby is clearly not market ready and another PR mishap is the last thing Samsung needs. This may not significantly impede Samsung's rebound on the consumer hardware side--but in software Samsung still has a lot to prove with Bixby positioned as a cornerstone of Samsung’s new cross-device software story.

For more on Bixby see - 
Galaxy S8 Smartphone Will Lift Samsung’s Profit in 2017
Samsung Bixby: The End of Touch and Swipe on Your Cellphone?
Samsung Bixby: Is Voice Enough to Differentiate its AI?
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