If you bought the Verizon Wireless versions of the new Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus phones, you won’t be able to use a pretty nice feature that is supposed to be available with the devices’ Bixby digital assistant. For some reason, those phones on Verizon cannot use the Bixby Vision image recognition technology to scan and recognize bar codes and products in the real world, and then see if they are available online at Amazon.
CNET first reported on this rather odd discrepancy, and a Verizon spokesperson admitted in a statement to the site that the Amazon shopping feature in Bixby Vision “isn’t operational yet” on its Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus phones. The spokesperson did not indicate why it was not included, nor when this feature would be added, saying only, “We are working with Amazon to provide that experience.”
The Verizon spokesperson did state that Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus owners can use the Amazon app “for the same photo and shopping experience.” The Bixby Vision-Amazon shopping feature is enabled for those phones from AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. It’s possible that Verizon has some issue with this feature at the moment, but so far it’s keeping those reasons to itself.
This is just the latest black eye Samsung has had to deal with surrounding the introduction of Bixby. The company previously admitted that the voice-command features in its new digital assistant would not be available for the launch of the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus, but would be added in an update later this spring. In addition, the ability to remap the dedicated Bixby hardware button on those phones has now been officially removed by Samsung. It was also recently revealed that Bixby would not go live in Germany until the fourth quarter of 2017.