Last week, we told you about the
fact possibility that the Samsung Bixby button could be remapped for other actions. An app called ‘‘All in one Gestures’ made it happen so some Galaxy S8 owners and early adopters got excited. However, the South Korean tech giant quickly responded albeit quietly by removing such ability. Obviously, the company got wind of the news so the devs made some changes. Our friends over at XDA said that remapping the Bixby button on the Galaxy S8 and S8+ has been removed. Perhaps some developers have been wanting to try it but couldn’t now.
Accessibility Services on the Galaxy device made the remapping easy so a ready app like the ‘ All in one Gestures’ made it possible. We’re just curious now why Samsung removed the newly “discovered” feature. XDA dev Flar2 wanted to update his ‘Button Mapper’ app for Bixby but was surprised to know it’s no longer supported after he received the latest software update on his Galaxy S8 from Telus. Some changes have been made already and this includes the button now “impossible to remap”.
We really don’t understand the intention of Samsung here because it runs Android and the platform should be generally customizible. The company can’t really ask people to use the Bixby button for one purpose only because not everyone will use it. Besides, the Bixby service isn’t fully ready yet so why stop S8 owners from tinkering on the “half-baked” AI-slash-voice assistant.
Interestingly, a Samsung representative named Philip Berne confirmed on Twiiter that this remapping ability for the Bixby button has been removed. We don’t doubt that this is something the brand woud do but someone just claimed that his review unit, at least in the US, still has the ability for remapping the button. The phone has the latest software so this change could also be carrier or country-specific. Let’s wait and see for further developments.