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Samsung Bixby 2.0 to debut on Galaxy Note 9 – second time’s the charm?

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 will arrive with Bixby 2.0 – the second-generation edition of the company’s voice-controlled personal assistant. Here’s everything you need to know about Bixby 2.0 on the Galaxy Note 9 and the Galaxy Home speaker

The new version of Bixby will improve upon its unloved predecessor with a number of new features. It’ll be boosted by faster response times, improved conversational skills and the ability to predict users’ needs.

Related: Note 9 deals

Samsung Bixby 2.0 – restaurant recommendations and Uber rides

In a demonstration at Samsung’s Unpacked event on August 9, Samsung showcased a new means of making a restaurant recommendation. Suggestions will be informed by places you’ve visited in the past, so if you have a penchant for sushi restaurants, they’ll sit at the top of the list.

Furthermore, Bixby 2.0 will also autofill other aspects of the booking process, like reservation time, your phone number and the number of guests, based upon your previous habits. You can change these manually, of course.

Related: Samsung Galaxy S9 vs Galaxy Note 9

Bixby 2.0 will also enable Galaxy Note 9 users to book Uber rides with their voice. In the on-stage demonstration, Samsung simply said “I need a ride to JFK” rather than saying “I need an Uber…”. Bixby simply responded with a price and a request to confirm.

Samsung noted that when looking for concerts or restaurants, users also don’t have to say “…on Ticketmaster” or “…on Yelp.” The assistant now has them fully integrated even if the apps aren’t installed on the phone itself.

The company said it is working with more partners on building similarly seamless integration with other third-party services.

Bixby 2.0 – more natural conversations and faster responses

Bixby 2.0 is also more like Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Assistant in the ability to hold up its end of a conversation. For example, if you ask it for the lowdown on London concerts this weekend, you can follow up with “what about the first weekend in September?” without asking the original question all over again.

Bixby concerts

Samsung is also promising Bixby 2.0 will be faster to respond to user queries, but this demonstration fell short during the Unpacked event. Of course, we won’t be reading too much into the mishap and will test response times when we go hands on with the Galaxy Note 9.

Bixby 2.0 – better luck this time?

Samsung will be hoping it’s second time lucky with the Siri rival, following a disappointing initial launch on the Galaxy S8 in 2017. Samsung initially announced Bixby 2.0 way back in October 2017, after the original’s poor reception. The first-gen assistant was blighted by a delayed English language release, a number of half-baked features and an unwanted Bixby button on Galaxy devices.

Bixby 2.0 will arrive on the Note 9 as the first smartphone out of the box, while it’ll also be the brains behind the new Galaxy Home smart speaker. Samsung did not mention when the update will be rolling out on other devices in the range, but we can assume it will be happening.

Are you prepared to give Bixby another shot on the Galaxy Note 9? Drop us a line @TrustedReviews on Twitter.

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