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Samsung please, it's about time you let us use the Bixby button on the Galaxy S8

Developers have found a new way to remap the Bixby button on the Galaxy S8 - so what do Samsung and phone companies go and do? They block it again. Ok, Samsung, it just so happens that as the owner of a Galaxy S8, I’d like to be able to use this button for different things. It does more than just show Bixby cards!

When you buy a cell phone, you become the owner of that device. That's the whole point of handing over the money, isn’t it? However, thanks to industry protection, manufacturers, large software developers, telephone companies and other business still demand that you abide by a set of rules to use their devices.

AndroidPIT Samsung Galaxy S8 100 days 1873
My phone, my rules! / © AndroidPIT

Those rules are the reason that in some countries, if you root your Android or jailbreak your iPhone, you void your warranty. And that, as crazy as it may be, is ok since the contract you sign says that if you want to benefit from the device’s warranty, then you can’t have administrator access.

That still means that you can choose to root your Android or modify it in any other way if you want to, correct? You’d obviously be giving up your warranty, but at least then you have the power to decide!

When Samsung added a button dedicated to its Virtual Assistant Bixby, which still doesn’t offer what was promised when it was launched by the way, it’s in the wrong by keeping it blocked. It’s a tool that can and should be used functionally on my Galaxy S8. I paid for it, didn’t I? So, it’s mine.



Opinion by Camila Rinaldi
Samsung, please let us use the Bixby button on the Galaxy S8.
What do you think?
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However, this not the first time that developers have found a way to remap the Bixby button on the Galaxy S8. Believe it or not, Samsung and phone companies are still sending out OTA correction patches to block the remap.

Bixby app remap bxActions en
BxAction gives you the option to use the Bixby button as quick access to Google Assistant. / © AndroidPIT

Using the bxAction App, developed by a third party, I have the possibility to remap the Bixby button on my Galaxy S8 - for now - and use it for something more functional than just the cards on Samsung’s assistant.

With bxAction, I can use the Bixby button to take screenshots (something I do a lot), get quick access to Google Assistant and full-screen mode. In the end, there are a lot of different options. A few other apps that use this button on the S8 are BixBye and Bixby Button Remapper. They’re all easy to use, and the required permissions are more than reasonable.

bxActions - Remap Bixby Button Install on Google Play

What bothers me isn’t the fact that Bixby still isn’t fully developed, since I like using Google Assistant, which is already available on the S8. It’s that we’re being used as pawns for manufacturers in their race to have the best and most intelligent AI assistant on the market. Samsung isn’t the only culprit here either.

The fact that we can’t use the Bixby button to launch other assistants, like Google’s, just proves that Samsung isn't confident in its service and it’s still in the test phase. As some kind of consolation, the South Korean manufacturer could at least let us use the button for some different features, don’t you think?

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  • ljhaye 3 days ago Link to comment

    Samsung wants Bixby to gain traction before they release new hardware i.e. speakers to compete with Apple's Homepod. In many parts of the world Samsung's Bixby will be synonymous with AI assistants as Google is uneven with the release of many of their new features.

  • I was very tempted to upgrade from my s7 edge to the s8.
    For me Sammy has gone just a little to far now with restricting software and making me have to use the button for Bixby.
    £600 for a phone that I can't customise. Mmm, not this time, I'll stick to my s7 for now as it's been such a great phone.

  • Disagree. It would make Bixby a moot point if they did that.

  • Nice article. Completely agree that Samsung needs to let the dedicated Bixby button be repurposed as the phone owner see's fit, especially when the button is non functional for its intended purpose.

  • Why?Not make it the camera button,so it does get used,Bixby is just showing to consumers that Samsung are still not up to date in its Software section,everytime someone comes forward with a new application,it makes Samsung panic and rush to get there version on offer even though it's not fully ready,the Note 7 and other offers from Samsung are not gaining confidence from consumers now days plus there pricing of there phones is turning people away from buying future Samsung phones,they should be trying more to please it's galaxy phone users instead of trying to gain iPhone users,Edge screens and Fragile Glass do not please everyone,so with Nokia and Huawei phones getting released and better Samsung better start watching themselves

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