Samsung’s AI assistant could see what you do, using the S8’s camera for eyes

And purchase whatever you point your phone at

We’re used to AI assistants being able to respond to our voice, like Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant can, but Samsung’s upcoming assistant (believed to be called Bixby) might go one further and respond to what we’re looking at, or at least what our phone’s pointing at.

That idea is based on information obtained by SamMobile, which claims the standard camera app on the Samsung Galaxy S8 will have a Bixby button, which will allow the assistant to analyze whatever the camera’s pointing at and identify objects and text.

If an object is recognized, Bixby could then search for it online, and even purchase it for you if applicable.

It’s less clear what it would do with any text it recognizes, but it’s easy to imagine uses for it, perhaps for example it would bring up related search results, much like Google Now on Tap does with on-screen text, or if the text is in a foreign language Bixby may be able to translate it.

The skills to succeed

Many of these features already exist in one form or another, but not all in one place, and certainly not all in an AI assistant, so this sort of thing could be exactly what Samsung needs to convince people to use Bixby rather than the more familiar Google Now.

SamMobile seems confident in this information, but notes that features can be added or removed at short notice, so there’s no guarantee that Bixby will be integrated into the Galaxy S8’s camera.

But it’s likely, as it appears Samsung is looking to make the assistant a big focus on its next flagship, as the company has already confirmed Bixby’s existence and some rumors even suggest there will be a dedicated Bixby button on the side of the phone.


James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps.