Samsung introduced the Bixby Text Call feature with One UI 5, but the original version was limited to Korean. Now the company is updating its virtual assistant to handle calls in English as well. However, Samsung One UI 5.1 is required. Text Call basically turns voice calls into text chats. It listens to what the other side is saying, transcribes it into text, and then lets you type in a response that the text-to-speech system will pronounce. It’s similar to Google’s Screen Call feature.
The whole thing is particularly useful in environments where you can’t speak or where it’s too loud. Or if you don’t want to disturb the other people nearby. In addition, Bixby can imitate your own voice. To do this, you record different sentences and the software creates an AI-supported copy. However, the Bixby Custom Voice Creator is only available in Korean, at least for now. However, the function should also be used in other Samsung apps, so other language versions are likely to come soon.
A nice improvement to Bixby is that you can now set a custom wake word. Previously, only “Hi, Bixby” or just “Bixby” worked. Pretty much everything from “Computer” to “KITT” works after the update. Bixby is also getting smarter and now understands context across different apps. For example, you can start a workout in Samsung Health and then say, “Play music for this workout.” The AI automatically selects songs that match the type of workout. Bixby can also work with the Calendar app and save appointments.
Bixby also works offline
Much of modern AI lives in the cloud, which of course raises privacy concerns. To dispel these, Samsung has worked to run commonly used commands completely offline. These include setting a timer, taking a screenshot, and turning on the flashlight. AI-based speech dictation is also available offline and currently supports English, Spanish, French, Italian, German and Korean.
The new features outlined above are coming to Bixby in a software update that will be released this month.