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Samsung Galaxy S8 Bixby update may finally have release date

Samsung’s long-awaited Bixby digital assistant may finally have a release date, at least according to one recent leak.

When Samsung unveiled the Galaxy S8 back in spring, the company made much of its new AI-powered digital assistant, Bixby. Pitched as a rival to Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Assistant, Bixby was Samsung’s way of staking a claim in the increasingly competitive mobile AI market.

But the retail release of the Galaxy S8 has come and gone, and we’re still yet to hear official word from Samsung on when Bixby will actually be made publicly available to all Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ owners.

Fortunately, a Reddit user named ‘Bixbyguy’ has posted what appears to be confirmation of the Bixby voice assistant launch date: Tuesday, July 18, 2017.

It’s not exactly clear who the Redditor is, but the information is revealed in a photograph of a screen with the message:

“Bixby Voice Launch Tuesday, 7/18. The long-awaited Bixby Voice launches Tuesday, 7/18. Below are a few tasks we need to complete to ensure we are retail ready! Watch and learn with the NEW Bixby Webinar training!”

From that message, the assumption would be that the poster either is – or has access to – someone who works for Samsung, either directly in corporate, an in-house Samsung retail environment, or at a third-party vendor. However, it’s impossible to verify this information for sure, and it could very easily have been faked – so take it with due caution.

If the software is coming, it seems likely that it will be issued through a carrier update. However, it’s not clear how widespread the rollout will be. Given the date format in this alleged Samsung memo, it’s clear that this launch date relates to a US release, and doesn’t necessarily confirm any UK plans.

Samsung declined to comment on this article.

Related: Best Android phones

Who do you think is winning the race for best digital assistant on a mobile device? Or are you still a Windows Clippy loyalist? Let us know in the comments.

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