Samsung is set to discontinue several Bixby AR features at the end of October.
The news comes from a screenshot shared with Android Police, which shows a ‘Notice of Changes to Our Service’ from Samsung. I was also able to pull up the same notice on an S10e when opening Bixby Visions or AR Zone. According to the notice, Samsung will stop supporting augmented reality features including ‘Places,’ ‘Makeup,’ ‘Home Decor’ and ‘Styling’ in Bixby Vision come the end of October.
These features covered a range of different AR use cases. For example, the Places feature could overlay map icons on Samsung’s camera, which could highlight local landmarks, restaurants and stores. Makeup, on the other hand, used filters to apply virtual lipstick, blush, eye shadow and more to users’ faces. Home Decor let users place virtual furniture in their room while Styling let people try on different types of sunglasses.
While some of these features are going away, it’s worth noting that these items aren’t an exhaustive list of Samsung’s AR features. The notices didn’t mention things like Bixby’s real-time translation feature, nor did it mention other accessibility options available as part of Bixby Vision. It appears these features will stick around for the time being.
Samsung first introduced Bixby back in 2017 and since then has included dedicated Bixby buttons on several flagship phones and introduced several updates to improve the digital assistant. There was also the Galaxy Home smart speaker that never materialized, except for a ‘Mini’ variant available in South Korea.
However, despite Samsung’s hard work on Bixby, the software was mostly disliked by media and users, with software to remap the button becoming quite popular. Eventually, Samsung stopped including the button on some of its phones and recent rumours suggest Samsung and Google are negotiating to make Google Assistant more prominent on the South Korean company’s phones.