Android Authority is reporting that Samsung mobile executive DJ Koh has suggested Bixby 2.0 will come in late 2018 around the expected time for the Galaxy Note 9 launch. Koh also indicated that 800 companies are already testing the new software. In a press conference at Mobile World Congress Mr. Koh commented:
In December last year, we began taking applications for the public beta version [of Bixby 2.0]. So far over 800 companies have applied and are testing it. At this speed, I think we will be able to unveil Bixby 2.0 when we launch the Galaxy Note 9
He also indicated that the company was focused on getting Bixby launched in “a fast rollout to the market” in 2017 over ensuring it worked perfectly. That imperfection was the source of many negative Bixby reviews and consumer complaints about the dedicated button on Galaxy S8 smartphones. Seemingly acknowledging these shortcomings, Koh added:
Expanding the ecosystem was difficult. Bixby 2.0 will strengthen this aspect and we are working intensely
Will Bixby 2.0 Land on the New Smart Speaker
Koh confirmed in a Wall Street Journal article over the weekend that Samsung expects to launch a new Bixby-powered smart speaker in late 2018. That timing seems to align nicely with the hints about Bixby 2.0. Much of Bixby’s current functional footprint is specific to the smartphone experience. A Bixby 2.0 update would almost assuredly be required to provide an adequate smart speaker experience. If 800 companies start building integrations that expand the feature set and Samsung rolls out compatibility with SmartThings and other smart home devices, we could be looking at an entirely new Bixby later this year.