Samsung really doesn’t want people to remap its proprietary AI launching Bixby button.
The company recently pushed out a firmware update that blocked a workaround allowing Samsung Galaxy S8 review unit users to remap the Bixby button, according to XDA Developers. The ability to remap the button’s function was possible due to an accessibility services option found in the settings of the S8.
XDA developer Flar2 was in the process of using the workaround in his app Button Mapper after receiving the Samsung S8 through Telus. However, after an update to the latest system build, the function disappeared.
XDA Developers notes that “Samsung has modified the system to consume the Bixby button’s key events before it reaches the Accessibility Services.” Essentially, the function is no longer in the accessibility settings of the phone. Philip Berne of the Samsung Review Program confirmed that Samsung intentionally blocked the remapping of the button. Now the only way to change the Bixby button is to root the device, a much less accessible option.
Keep in mind Samsung’s AI will come without voice support at launch, meaning you won’t be able to converse with it. The S8 also houses the Google Assistant voice AI, available via a long press of the home button.
Source: XDA Developer