Samsung’s US launch of Bixby, its voice-powered assistant meant to rival the likes of Amazon’s Alexa, has been further delayed due to a lack of big data.
The English-language version of Bixby was originally supposed to launch in May, but making the move from Korean is proving more difficult than expected, reportedly pushing its launch back to the autumn.
“Developing Bixby in other languages is taking more time than we expected mainly because of the lack of the accumulation of big data,” a Samsung spokesperson told the Korea Herald.
This suggests that the beta test of Bixby, which began in June, has failed to attract enough users – or that they’re not using it frequently enough – to gather the necessary amount of voice data required for deep learning.
The Herald also reports that work on Bixby has been slowed down by communication issues between teams in the US and Korea. An anonymous source identifies “geographical and language barriers” between engineers working on the English version, and management in Korea.
These issues haven’t stopped Samsung from pushing ahead with its own answer to Google Home, Amazon Echo and Apple HomePod. According to the Wall Street Journal, it is currently working on a voice-activated speaker, powered by Bixby, currently codenamed ‘Vega’.
There’s no set timescale for the product to launch, but like Bixby itself, it risks falling too far behind the competition, and looking like a ‘me-too’ imitator.